Perseverance Launches to Hunt for Signs of Ancient Martian Life | Planetary Science, Space Exploration – Sci-News.com

NASAs Mars 2020 Perseverance rover andIngenuityhelicopter launched on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 541 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 7:50 a.m. EDT on July 30, 2020.

The Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover and Ingenuity helicopter are on the way to Mars after the July 30 7:50 a.m. launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Image credit: NASA.

The Perseverance rover mission will address high-priority science goals for Mars exploration.

Developed under NASAs Mars Exploration Program, it will seek signs of past microbial life and characterize the planets climate and geology.

It will also collect samples of Martian rocks and dust for a future Mars Sample Return mission to Earth, while paving the way for human exploration of the Red Planet.

Perseverance will land in Jezero Crater on Mars on February 18, 2021.

Home to a lake billions of years ago, Jezero isnt a typical Mars crater.

This is a wonderful place to live for microorganisms, said Perseverance project scientist Dr. Ken Farley, of Caltech, speaking of the time when the lake was still there.

And it is also a wonderful place for those microorganisms to be preserved so that we can find them now so many billions of years later.

The car-sized Perseverance is also the largest, heaviest robotic Mars rover NASA has built.

The rover is about 3 m (10 feet) long not including the robotic arm, 2.7 m (9 feet) wide and 2.1 m (7 feet) tall. But at 1,025 kg (2,260 pounds), it weighs less than a compact car.

Its robotic arm is equipped with a rotating turret, which includes a rock drill, science instruments and a camera.

But while Perseverances arm is 2.1 m (7 feet) long, just like Curiositys, its turret weighs more 45 kg (99 pounds) because it carries larger instruments and a larger drill for coring. The drill will cut intact rock cores, and theyll be placed in sample tubes via a complex storage system.

Perseverance also has a six-wheel, rocker-bogie design derived from all of NASAs Mars rovers to date that helps to maintain a relatively constant weight on each of the rovers wheels and minimizes tilt.

The wheels are slightly narrower and taller than Curiositys but are similarly machined out of a rigid, lightweight aluminum alloy.

Both Curiosity and Perseverance have wheels lined with grousers raised treads that are specially designed for the Martian desert.

This artists concept depicts NASAs Mars rover Perseverance on the surface of the Red Planet. Image credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech.

Perseverance is carrying seven different scientific instruments:

(i) Mastcam-Z is an advanced camera system with panoramic and stereoscopic imaging capability with the ability to zoom;

(ii) SuperCam is an instrument that can provide imaging, chemical composition analysis, and mineralogy at a distance;

(iii) Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry (PIXL) is an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer and high-resolution imager, which will map the fine-scale elemental composition of Martian surface materials;

(iv) Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals (SHERLOC) is a spectrometer that will provide fine-scale imaging and uses an ultraviolet (UV) laser to map mineralogy and organic compounds;

(v) The Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) is a technology demonstration that will produce oxygen from Martian atmospheric carbon dioxide;

(vi) Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer (MEDA) is a set of sensors that will provide measurements of temperature, wind speed and direction, pressure, relative humidity, and dust size and shape;

(vii) Radar Imager for Mars Subsurface Experiment (RIMFAX) is a ground-penetrating radar that will provide centimeter-scale resolution of the geologic structure of the subsurface.

NASAs Mars helicopter Ingenuity. Image credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech.

Another special feature on Perseverance can be found on the aft crossbeam: a plate that contains three silicon chips stenciled with the names of approximately 10.9 million people from around the world who participated in the online Send Your Name to Mars campaign from May to September 2019.

The fingernail-sized chips also contain the essays of 155 finalists in NASAs Name the Rover essay contest.

The chips share space on an anodized plate with a laser-etched graphic depicting Earth and Mars joined by the star that gives light to both and a message in Morse code in the Suns rays: Explore as one.

Perseverance is also bringing a twin-rotor, solar-powered helicopter named Ingenuity to test out aerial flight on another planet for the first time.

The Wright Brothers showed that powered flight in Earths atmosphere was possible, using an experimental aircraft, said Ingenuitys chief pilot Dr. Hvard Grip, a researcher at NASAs Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

With Ingenuity, which weighs only about 1.8 kg (4 pounds), were trying to do the same for Mars.

Perseverance is ferrying 23 cameras to the Red Planet the most ever flown in the history of deep-space exploration. Two cameras are installed on the Ingenuity helicopter.

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Perseverance Launches to Hunt for Signs of Ancient Martian Life | Planetary Science, Space Exploration - Sci-News.com

The lunar rock hounds of Apollo 15: Exploring the moon in a bucking bronco buggy in 1971 – PennLive

Just two years after the first men walked on the moon, some astronauts drove a buggy on it.

Although astronauts David R. Scott and James B. Irwin described the Lunar Roving Vehicle more like a bucking bronco buggy.

Scott, Irwin and Alfred M. Worden went to the moon aboard Apollo 15 in 1971. Scott and Irwin were the first astronauts to operate a vehicle on the moon and Worden was the first to go on a spacewalk.

As the trio entered the orbit of the moon on July 29, 1971, The Patriot reported, Three excited men seeing a desolate world of craters and rugged mountains below them and calling it absolutely overwhelming absolutely mind-boggling.

Apollo 15 launched from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on July 26, 1971.

This mini-panorama combines two photographs taken by Apollo 15 lunar module pilot Jim Irwin, from the Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package (ALSEP) site, at the end of the second Apollo 15 moonwalk on August 1, 1971. Apollo 15 was the fourth crewed mission to land on the Moon and the first to visit and explore the Moon's Hadley Rille and Apennine Mountains which are located on the southeast edge of the Mare Imbrium (Sea of Rains). The image shows the ALSEP Central Station in the foreground, the Passive Seismic Experiment beyond the left side, and the Lunar Surface magnetometer in the background near the center. Mission commander David R. Scott is leaning to his right and is putting down the Apollo Lunar Surface drill used to take core samples and set up a heat flow experiment. The Solar Wind Spectrometer is in the right foreground.The min-pan of photographs AS15-11845 and 11847 was combined by Erik van Meijgaarden, volunteer contributor to the Apollo Lunar Surface Journal site. (NASA)

Scott was the commander, Worden the command module pilot and Irwin the lunar module pilot.

From July 30 to Aug. 2, Scott, Worden and Irwin spent 18.5 hours on the moon and collected 170 pounds of material.

During the return trip, Worden performed the first spacewalk in deep space.

From NASA, During three periods of extravehicular activity, or EVA, on July 31, and Aug. 1 and 2, Scott and Irwin completed a record 18 hours, 37 minutes of exploration, traveled 17.5 miles in the first car that humans have ever driven on the moon, collected more than 170 pounds of lunar samples, set up the ALSEP array, obtained a core sample from about 10 feet beneath the lunar surface, and provided extensive oral descriptions and photographic documentation of geologic features in the vicinity of the landing site during the three days (66 hours, 55 minutes) on the lunar surface.

The Lunar Roving Vehicle weighed about 460 pounds. It could be folded for storage aboard the lunar module.

Astronaut James Irwin beside the Rover parked near the lunar module, looking northeast, Mount Hadley in the background. (AP Photo)

Mike Neufeld, a curator in the space history division at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. told space.com, "It was a very elegant little vehicle," Neufeld said. "It had to be lightweight and had to be folded up in a very compact space. They were very successful there were no major failures so clearly it was a successful design."

The vehicle had a top speed of about 8 mph. The rocky surface of the moon prevented the astronauts from going very fast.

Neufeld said, "They weren't driving on flat land it was more like a dirt buggy than anything else. It didn't travel that fast, but for the astronauts who drove it, it seemed like it was exciting and fast. It was a pretty bouncy ride. Even flat looking terrain on the moon is not very flat because there are so many crater pits, so it would have been a fairly exciting ride."

On Aug. 2, 1971, The Patriot reported, The Apollo 15 lunar rock hounds think they found what they went to the moon for a piece of crystal rock that may date from the creation of the universe.

The astronauts were searching for and found anorthosite, a type of rock that is very rare on earth. Grains of anorthosite found in soil from the Apollo 11 and 12 landing sites have been dated at 4.6 billion years - the age of the solar system.

In this image provided by NASA, the two Apollo 15 astronauts are shown gathering lunar samples during their second lunar surface extravehicular activity in this reproduction taken from a color transmission made by the RCA color television camera mounted on the Lunar Roving Vehicle, August 10, 1971. David R. Scott, commander, is on the left. On the right is lunar module pilot James B. Irwin. (AP Photo/NASA)

Apollo 15 also was the first flight to include a spacewalk.

On Aug. 5, Worden became the first person to perform deep space extravehicular activity.

Worden said he was outside the spacecraft for 38 minutes.

He described it to smithsonianmag.com, Black as the ace of Spades, but as Jim and I floated out, there was enough sunlight to light our way. It was an unbelievable sensation. I described it once as going for a swim alongside Moby Dick.

What a feeling to be free in deep space about 196,000 miles from home."

... It was the most unbelievable sight one could imagine, and I was so proud of our ability and ingenuity as a nation to do something this magnificent. By turning my head just so I could position myself so that both the Earth and the Moon were in field of vision. I realized that no one in all of history had ever seen this sight before. What an honor it was.

The astronauts splashed down in the Pacific Ocean, 335 miles north of Honolulu on Aug. 7.

Helicopters picked them up and took them to the USS Okinawa.

The return was safe despite the fact that one of the three parachutes on the command module failed.

The three astronauts were reprimanded a year later when it was revealed they had secretly carried unauthorized postal covers to the surface of the moon and each paid $7,000 for it. When NASA got wind of the stamp covers being for sale by a German stamp dealer, they were reprimanded and had to forfeit the money. In addition, they never flew into space again.

Three Apollo 15 Astronauts, from left, David Scott; Alfred Worden, and James Irwin, were disciplined by NASA July 12, 1972, for secretly carrying 400 souvenir, stamped envelopes that could have been sold for $600,000 or more. One hundred of the envelopes were given to an acquanintance of the astronauts and sold at a reported price of $1,500 each. The three, who eventually decided not to take any of the $150,000, "exercized poor judgement," NASA said. (AP Photo)


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The lunar rock hounds of Apollo 15: Exploring the moon in a bucking bronco buggy in 1971 - PennLive

Hope Leads the Way to Mars – The Planetary Society

Mat Kaplan:Leading the way to the Red Planet, this week on Planetary Radio. Welcome. I'm Mat Kaplan of the Planetary Society with more of the human adventure across our solar system and beyond. Hope is on its way to Mars. We'll enjoy a conversation with the two leaders of the Emirates Mars Mission in a few minutes. China's Tianwen-1 was also successfully launched a few days ago. By the time the first of you hear this, Perseverance, NASA's next Mars rover should be hours away from its liftoff. The agency's Thomas Zurbuchen and Mimi Aung, leader of the Mars Helicopter project are moments away.

Mat Kaplan:Down the line, we'll hear from Bruce Betts about comet NEOWISE and the other wonders waiting for you in the night sky. The July 24 edition of the down link is topped by a view of two worlds that aren't from around here. In fact, these young gas-giants circle the star that is 300 light years away. The image was captured by the European Southern Observatory's very large telescope in Chile. Yeah, that's its name, the very large telescope. It was augmented with a chronograph that blocked most of the star's light revealing those planets.

Mat Kaplan:Launch of the James Webb Space Telescope has been delayed again, as the pandemic continues to take its toll and just on us humans. NASA is now looking at October 31st of next year, that's right, the most powerful and ambitious space telescope ever will get a spooky Halloween send-off. Astronauts Bob Behnken and Chris Cassidy have completed the power system upgrade of the International Space Station with the final space walk. Behnken and Doug Hurley are set to return to Earth in their SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule on August 2nd.

Mat Kaplan:As always, you'll find much, much more at planetary.org/downlink and you can sign-up to receive our weekly newsletter for free. Remember Mimi Aung? We talked back in July of last year with the project manager for the first flying machine headed to another planet. Aung participated in a July 20th virtual event presented by Space Foundation. Titled Roving the Red Planet, the webinar also featured past Planetary radio guests NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, Jet Propulsion Lab Director Michael Watkins, and NASA's Associate Administrator for its Science Mission Directorate Thomas Zurbuchen. We'll hear from Zurbuchen in a few minutes, but first, here's some of what Aung had to say.

Mimi Aung:There are three technologies being demonstrated on Mars 2020. The terrain relative navigation for safer landing in hazardous terrain, Montse, which converts a carbon dioxide to oxygen for instituted resource utilization, and the Mars Helicopter. NASA performs technology demonstrations, tech demos to demonstrate advanced capabilities for spacecraft for our future missions. The Mars Helicopter tech demo will be the first ever to attempt a rotorcraft flight at Mars. In fact, we as human beings have never flown a rotorcraft, a helicopter, anywhere outside of our own Earth's atmosphere. So, really a Wright Brothers moment but on another planet.

Mimi Aung:For NASA, the Mars technology demonstration, Mars Helicopter tech demo is motivated by the potential to add the aerial dimension to space exploration. Today we explore Mars from spacecraft in orbit and rovers roving on the surface. In the future, there'll be astronauts on the surface and the helicopter can serve as scout for rovers and astronauts. A helicopter can also allow us to reach places that are simply not accessible today without being able to fly.

Mimi Aung:It's not easy to build a rotorcraft to fly at Mars. The atmosphere is really thin. Compared to Earth, it's about 1%. A vehicle to fly in Mars has to be really light and it has to spin really fast. The helicopter we've built is named Ingenuity, and Ingenuity has a rotor system that's 1.2 meter in diameter and the entire vehicle has to weigh under two kilograms. That's about four pounds. To build this vehicle that weighs about four pounds while having the capability to fly and land autonomously, and to survive and operate autonomously at Mars, remotely operated from Earth, that's a huge challenge. It's the tiny package with tons of capability packed. The day our vehicle weighed in, it weighed in a hair under 1.8 kilogram. That was a huge day for us.

Mimi Aung:Since then, we've performed the helicopter test flights in a simulated Mars atmosphere in the 25-foot diameter space simulator chamber here at JPL. Very importantly, Perseverance has tested deploying us from the belly pan of the Perseverance Rover successfully to the surface. At this point, we've performed all the tests that we can on Earth and the next step really is now to do it in the real environment this Mars Helicopter Ingenuity is designed for in space vacuum, as soon as after launch, and finally on the surface of Mars.

Mimi Aung:We have a 30 Martian day window to do our flight experiments. We have up to five flight plans to be performed in that time period. The first and foremost, the most important flight for us, for our team is the very first flight where we'll repeat the flight that we have tested multiple times in our test chamber here on Earth. And then after getting the first flight, then we will be performing more bolder and bolder flights of higher heights and further distances. So, here we are. Exciting days ahead. Helicopter is about to be launched. Our team is thrilled. It's truly the high risk/high reward phase of our project. High risk because every step forward, every event that we have will be a first time event, right? First in space vacuum, and then in the environment of Mars.

Mimi Aung:But more importantly, high reward. All of the experiences will be feeding into future much more capable rotorcraft for our team. That is the ultimate reward that we've worked really, really, really hard for. I came to NASA inspired for the opportunity to contribute to space exploration. And along the way, I also fell in love with making first of a kind capabilities work for increasingly autonomous advanced space systems. Here today is an example of the dream come true. Here we are on a historical mission, Perseverance working on a tech demo, Mars Helicopter Ingenuity. Thank you so much

Mat Kaplan:Mars Helicopter Project Manager, Mimi Aung. The tiny whirly bird is now making its way to the Red Planet in the belly of the Perseverance rover. Thomas Zurbuchen, always speaks eloquently and with great passion about our exploration of the solar system and beyond. Here are a few excerpts from his contribution to Space Foundation's webinar.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Before I get started, I wanted to congratulate the United Arab Emirates for their successful launch of the Hope Mission to Mars along with their Japanese launch partners, that's a truly amazing accomplishment and we're happy to join them soon with Perseverance because together, Hope and Perseverance are essential ingredients of exploration. It's truly an exciting decade ahead of us as the entire world sends missions to Mars, to study and explore the Red Planet.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Next week, the United States returns to Mars. It's the next step in putting together a puzzle we've been working on for centuries which has accelerated in the last 55 years beginning with the first flyby of Mars by Mariner 4. The world's eyes were opened when the Viking lander sent back transformative pictures of the surface of another planet for the first time. The world got to see for itself the color Mars red with its own eyes.

Thomas Zurbuchen:We saw how it resembled our great American desert scapes and we wondered anew what our two planets might have in common where all the ingredients necessarily to life, carbon, other elements, water, energy; were they present on Mars and [inaudible 00:08:58] produce microbes as they did on Earth. But did unhappy celestial occurrences for the neighbors snuffed out that agent's life as we strive here and flourish here on Earth as life is an important part of our planet.

Thomas Zurbuchen:These are questions scientists have pondered for decades and more. Now, we sent Perseverance, the most capable robotic scientist ever sent to the surface of another planet, to the most promising place we could determine from here that could have supported life. An ancient river delta by what might have once have been a huge lake. The Perseverance Rover belts on the legacy of NASA's Mars exploration program and joined a fleet that right now includes our rover, outlander, and multiple orbiters. It's our ninth mission to land and our fifth rover.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Perseverance is our first mission to astrobiology. In this case, the search of ancient life as part of its top line science goals, that current fleet of Mars including the rovers planet made Curiosity which is still roving five years in. On older missions we have sent historically, these other missions have all found things that led us to keep going down this path. Having found organics, methane, signs of water in the past and even now, Perseverance suites of instruments will take the next step.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Perseverance is also the bridge between science and human aspiration that demonstrates how the two can support and reinforce each other. It will do incredible things until human scientists with their own unique perspectives and ability to make science judgments are able to walk the surface. I'll look forward to that personally, many of us, too. What will Perseverance do? The planet stories told in parts through its climate and meta will tell us more about the weather on Mars and prevalence of dust and how it would affect human missions.

Thomas Zurbuchen:RIMFAX will probe beneath the surface perhaps finding ice deposits human missions could use. SuperCam and Mars cam will survey and study the environment and turn amazing images. Basically, Perseverance will bring all human senses to Mars. We'll sense the air around it. See and scan the horizon, hear the planet with microphones on the surface for the first time, feel it as it picks up samples into cache and perhaps even taste it in the sense as pixel and other instrument sample the chemistry in the rocks and soil around it.

Thomas Zurbuchen:As humans prepare for the greatest adventure here in-person exploration of Mars, our robots can help. MOXIE will help that demonstrate how we might live off the land by converting carbon dioxide into oxygen that we can breathe or for rocket fuel. Sherlock in addition, do searching for organics uses space suit material for calibration which will also help us learn how it degrades on Mars and technologies such as MEDLI and terrain relative navigation, TRN will help our rover to the surface and also provide data that is important to landing future human missions on Mars.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Jim is going to talk a lot about this and this important context of human exploration as well. A helicopter named Ingenuity will demonstrate powered flight on another planet for the first time. I really look forward to seeing this Marsian Wright Brothers moment. Mimi will tell us more about this. I'm just so excited about it. Perseverance is going to prepare for humanity at long last to hold a piece of Mars in our hand, not just a meteorite from somewhere but a piece of an actual surface with its geologic context analyzed with the best instruments there for us to study back on Earth, the best instruments humanity has available to themselves, not only today but also in the future.

Thomas Zurbuchen:This is the first lap of humanity's first-ever roundtrip to another planet. This amazing explorer could not have been ready for launch. In this transient window we have without the perseverance of teams across the country and the world who struggled and sacrificed through the global pandemic to keep their sights on this milestone of humanity. Their work and this mission embody the agency's and our nation's spirit of persevering even in the most challenging of situations, providing inspiration and advancing science and exploration.

Thomas Zurbuchen:The mission itself personifies the human ideal of persevering towards the future. Mike is going to tell us more about this, especially. Perseverance carries our hopes and dreams, the names of 11 million people from across the world who sent in their names to go with us under the plaque we read, "Explore as one." I just want to tell you, both of my parents who are no longer with us, their names are there. That is really meaningful to me from that perspective as well as also my family who's here, whose all of their names are on this list.

Thomas Zurbuchen:Perseverance carries the goodwill of the entire space community that we and other nations all sent missions to Mars this decade. It reinforces NASA's commitment to working with our international partners to accomplish stunning achievements in science, technology, and exploration. When Perseverance launches, it takes us all. Everyone of us will have a chance to learn from and be inspired by this mission. Any time we attempt something that pushes us to the next threshold is a time to celebrate. It is a big moment. A milestone for humanity that we all share. We explore and discover together. And together, we persevere.

Mat Kaplan:Thomas Zurbuchen, NASA's Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate. We're grateful to Space Foundation. We've got a link to their complete Roving the Red Planet Webinar on this week's showpage@planetary.org/radio. We're far from done. After a quick break, we'll head for the United Arab Emirates for a great conversation with Sarah Al Amiri and Omran Sharaf, leaders of The Emirates Mars Mission and the Hope orbiter. Stay with us.

Bill Nye:Where did we come from? Are we alone in the cosmos? These are the questions at the core of our existence. The secrets of the universe are out there waiting to be discovered, but to find them, we have to go into space. We have to explore. This endeavor unites us. Space exploration truly brings out the best in us. Encouraging people from all walks of life to work together, to achieve a common goal, to know the cosmos and their place within.

Bill Nye:This is why the Planetary Society exists. Our mission is to give you the power to advance space science and exploration. With your support, we sponsor innovative space technologies, inspire curious minds, and advocate for our future in space. We are the Planetary Society. Join us.

Mat Kaplan:We featured a launch party on last week's show. One of the many voices you heard belonged to Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousif Al Amiri. Sarah is Deputy Project Manager and Science Lead on the Emirates Mars Mission or EMM. She's also Minister of State for Advanced Sciences in the UAE and she has been named the new President of the UAE's Space Agency. Those are just a few of her titles and accomplishments.

Mat Kaplan:Joining Sarah on this week's show is Omran Sharaf. Omran is the EMM Project Director at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center. He's overseeing every aspect of this ambitious mission including the transition from a focus on Earth observation satellites to development to interplanetary missions. You're going to hear the term MEPAG used. That's the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group. Sarah and Omran, thank you so much for joining us on Planetary Radio. It is a great honor to be able to speak to you so soon after the beginning of this mission, the Emirates Mars Mission with its Hope spacecraft.

Mat Kaplan:I know I speak on behalf of our audience and everyone, all my colleagues at the Planetary Society want to congratulate you on this terrific start for this mission to the Red Planet. Thank you for being here.

Sarah Al Amiri:Thank you for having us, Mat. It's a pleasure for us to be on and to talk about the start of the Hope Mars Mission.

Mat Kaplan:I have to join NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine who we heard on the show last week and many other space experts and officials around the world who are also congratulating you and your team. I'm sure you have been asked this question too many times, but how does it feel to be on your way to Mars? Sarah, why don't you start again?

Sarah Al Amiri:It's been over six years of intense work. As you all know, it's challenging to get a spacecraft built to Mars and it's even more challenging to do it in six years. It's been a mixture of emotions across the board even after launch, leading up to launch. Now that we have the spacecraft there, it's a rollercoaster of emotions where you hit a high every time you achieve a milestone, but you know there's another challenge coming up. It's just these series of challenges that will continue on until we get to orbit around Mars, until we get to starting our science operations and getting scientific data down and start analyzing that. The emotional journey that we're on at the moment will continue on for the next few months.

Mat Kaplan:Omran, a slight variation on that question. How did it feel? Was there a sense of relief when your spacecraft turned toward the big antennas and started to say, "I'm feeling fine. I'm on my way to Mars."

Omran Sharaf:I wouldn't say a full relief. It felt good. I was happy that actually the spacecraft is safe and is communicating with us. It's a long journey. It's a seven-month journey. We have the Mars Orbit Insertion; a very, very critical days in the project that's going to take place in February 2021. It felt good, but not fully relieved.

Mat Kaplan:What is the current status of the spacecraft, Omran?

Omran Sharaf:The spacecraft is safe and sound. It's healthy. It started its cruise towards Mars. We're monitoring the spacecraft on a continuous basis 24/7 for now, as we are commissioning the spacecraft as part of the deal. This process will stay like this for about two weeks, maybe. Later on, we'll switch to normal operations in which we'll be having our operations conducted or contacting the spacecraft twice a week, for six hours every contact. So far, everything looks good and we're happy with the status of the spacecraft.

Mat Kaplan:Are there any significant milestones during this cruise phase as Hope makes its way to Mars?

Omran Sharaf:Yes. We do have very important operations that would take place about 10 days from now, the TCM, trajectory correction maneuver. We have a series of 70 scans taking place which are being launched and arrive to Mars which are very critical for us. This is, I would say, the most critical operation that will be taking place. It will be taking place about seven times throughout the journey.

Mat Kaplan:So, plenty to keep you busy, it sounds like.

Omran Sharaf:Yes.

Mat Kaplan:I know and I'm sure you know that arrival at Mars whether it's orbital insertion as you'll be doing are heading down to the surface is thrilling but can also be terrifying, and this is your first time doing this. What steps have you taken or will you be taking to make sure things go smoothly?

Omran Sharaf:Yes, as you mentioned it's a very risky operation. When it comes to risk [inaudible 00:21:17] the best way to mitigate those risks especially with these missions and especially if it's a platform that you developed, it's not a platform that's been bought or something that's been used before, is by testing it, testing it, and testing it. Before launching, we had a lot of scenarios that simulated the Mars orbit insertion and saw how the spacecraft reacted to these scenarios.

Omran Sharaf:For now, what we can do is again just monitor the spacecraft and make sure that we are on the right trajectory. By the time we reach Mars, we make sure that the softwares are up to date, the data that the spacecraft is using to conduct the maneuvers are up to date, whether it's a nominal scenario, whether it's a scenario [inaudible 00:21:58] error and saw how the spacecraft reacted to that error and fixed that error.

Mat Kaplan:What happens after you achieve your initial orbit at Mars? There are some further adjustments that have to be made before Sarah and her science team can start doing their work, right?

Omran Sharaf:Yes. We will [inaudible 00:22:18] orbit in about month or two. It depends in the spacecraft. During that time, we again check the status of all the subsystems of the instruments, and make sure that the instruments are actually working well. A calibration will take place. Then, after that, we shift it to our science orbit and again, we'll have to check the status of the systems again and calibrate it for the science orbit that it will be operating from. Once that's done and we check the validity of the data that we are receiving from the spacecraft basically, the science team will be able to take that data and use it, and distribute it to the rest of the world to also use it in their studies.

Mat Kaplan:Sarah, let me turn to you. If you're like other missions scientists that I know, I expect you'll be going a bit crazy as you wait through all of these to begin gathering data and doing the science that Hope was going to enable.

Sarah Al Amiri:A large part of what we're doing as the science team at the moment, is the scientists have actually been working on what we're calling the path to science closure and that's analyzing the data that we will get from the Hope probe from about a year-and-a-half now. All the models that need to go into play visualization tools, certain studies that need to take place have already been in development and we've utilized either data that has been captured from the instrument on the ground or sometimes, especially for us on the Emirates side, utilized a lot of training data from other missions that somewhat will capture some form of data that is similar to the Emirates Mars vision. We've been able to work on developing capabilities through that.

Sarah Al Amiri:Also, the processing is very important to the instrument scientists on the team are currently working on the data pipeline, ensuring that we're able to process the data to a level with which scientists can take it and analyze it. They'll be working in conjunction with the engineering team through cruise because there's a few maneuvers that need to happen with regards to the instruments and also in capture orbit, we'll be collecting data while we're in capture orbit transitioning into science. Work on the science team at the moment is ramping up and the team is now really looking forward to getting their hands on the data.

Mat Kaplan:This is such and important point and I think a lot of people who otherwise consider themselves space enthusiasts, don't realize the level of work that has to go in not just by the engineers behind the mission, but the scientists in preparing to get the data for, as you said, months and years before that data starts to flow.

Sarah Al Amiri:Absolutely. A lot of people used to say the science team's work starts after launch, when you get into science orbit. That's absolutely not the case. We started very early on, on the mission together with the engineering team. That's how you scope the requirements. You start with objectives of what you want to study of the planet, and you start breaking that down into the requirements that engineers then go and design and develop the mission for. We've been working on this mission even more closely with our system engineering team, our spacecraft developers, all the instrument teams both on the engineering and science side to get to the point that we're at, mission designers.

Sarah Al Amiri:Even how you capture your data, how often do you want to cover which areas of Mars at which resolution, all of this is defined very early on by the science team. Before you launch, you need to verify that the instruments are functioning according to plan. Then again, after you launch, you need to ensure that a lot of the design and development work goes into place so that you're able to get the right datasets. That's the role of the science team that's very well-integrated in the overall mission and starts from day one and stays on to well after decommissioning to release data.

Mat Kaplan:Is it fair to call Hope Mars' first weather satellite?

Sarah Al Amiri:Absolutely. We're providing the first holistic view of the Marsian weather throughout an entire year and cover the gap in knowledge that we have, and that's the transitions from the day to night cycles. It's every time of the day, we'll be able to cover all of Mars in roughly a 10-day span. This gives us a much better understanding of the weather system of Mars. We also get to correlate how much impact does the weather have on atmospheric loss.

Mat Kaplan:Could you go over briefly because I know there's much more detail on the mission website and we will link to that website and other resources on this week's showpage@planetary.org/radio but what are the instruments that Hope carries that will be collecting this data?

Sarah Al Amiri:It carries three different instruments to collect the data. All three instruments are scientific instruments. The first two which is the Emirates Mars Infrared Spectrometer and the Emirates eXploration Imager are providing the weather data for us. They'll be looking entirely at the lower atmosphere of Mars. That's where weather occurs. They'll be capturing data about dust, water vapor, ice clouds, ozone so that we're able to fully characterize what happens in the lower atmosphere.

Sarah Al Amiri:We also have a second instrument which is the Emirates Mars Ultraviolet Spectrometer. That is looking at how far out hydrogen and oxygen extends into the atmosphere. It focuses at the exosphere of Mars. The other aspects of this mission which is our third objective is we want to understand, if something happens in the lower atmosphere of Mars, for example there's dust storm. How does that impact atmospheric loss? What does it do with escape rates of hydrogen and oxygen?

Sarah Al Amiri:We're able to do that using the EMUS instrument that also looks at the thermosphere and it measures carbon monoxide and oxygen, and provides us that link between upper and lower atmosphere. So that we can have an overall view of what role does Mars play in the loss of its atmosphere and we already have an understanding of what role space plays in the loss of Mars' atmosphere. That can provide us a better understanding of climate change on Mars and atmospheric loss on the planet.

Sarah Al Amiri:Hopefully, in the larger perspective of things and this is something that was vital to its mission, to be complimentary to other studies on Mars. In the larger perspective, things will help us better understand how the Marsian atmosphere went from a much denser and wetter one to a dry and very thick atmosphere.

Mat Kaplan:Complimentary indeed because of course with what you've been describing, you've made me think of the MAVEN Mission that we've also covered pretty extensively on this show. Would you say that the MAVEN will definitely be complimented and maybe its work will be amplified by what Hope may be helping us to learn?

Sarah Al Amiri:It's not only the MAVEN Mission. You can take several other missions including ones that for example cover on the polar orbit and they cover the Marsian atmosphere at a higher resolution than our mission. Then, you got the landers that are on the surface that cover quite extensively local weather in a very localized place. It fits in very well on the overall science and the reason it does that it's because we utilized the report that MEPAG usually releases on scientific goals for exploring Mars and been able to find gaps within that, that no other mission is designing for.

Sarah Al Amiri:The purpose of that is that we want to send a purely scientific mission that doesn't replicate other missions, to add on to the scientific findings, and it helps our team get the full experience. It is our first mission, yes, but we wanted our team to learn because we're building, he built his own capacity. Therefore, to learn they need to go through the entire process of learning and things that are unknown and defining science objectives in areas that you're not 100% sure what your outcome is going to be.

Sarah Al Amiri:Now, what will be interesting for me personally is taking what we get in terms of findings and then having that spin out more questions. That for me is what exploration is all about. When your one answer builds into or translates into several other questions to be asked about Mars, and it continuously pushes forward unlocking all the mysteries.

Mat Kaplan:Boy, that's science for you, isn't it? Omran, let me turn back to you. Space communication, deep space communication especially always a big challenge. How are you going to be getting Sarah's data back here to Earth and sending commands to the spacecraft?

Omran Sharaf:It uses an X-band antenna that we have onboard our spacecraft to communicate with the spacecraft and also to send commands and receive data and telemetries. We're utilizing the deep space network, NASA's Deep Space Network. We thought instead of us building everything from A to Z, it was more about utilizing existing platforms and infrastructure around the world to deliver this mission. The command and control room in Dubai is connected to the DSN. That's how we communicate with it.

Omran Sharaf:As you mentioned, it's a big challenge. As we move further away from Earth, the delay in communication increases and by the time we reach Mars, the delay is going to be between about 15 to 20 minutes which adds bigger challenges to the operations and sort of to what we mentioned earlier, Mars orbit insertion in which that process will have to take place autonomously and on its own. Basically, we find out about it if we succeeded or not 20 minutes later.

Mat Kaplan:Yeah, always a challenge.

Omran Sharaf:The spacecraft definitely needs to be smarter than let's say spacecrafts orbiting Earth. The EMUS Mars Mission was at least five times more complex than the previous missions that we worked on at the center. The challenge here was also not just the fact that it had to be smarter but also, for us to understand how smarter it needs to be and also at the same time, build a spacecraft or design it or get the knowledge, and deciding of how to design such a smart spacecraft. That was also a challenge for the team.

Mat Kaplan:Sarah, let me switch gears here and come back to you as we talk about the other reasons this mission is taking place. Of course the chance to gather unique data at Mars is exciting and very important, but it's those other reasons the UAE is taking on this challenge that I want to turn to beginning with the name you chose for this spacecraft. Is this mission all about hope?

Sarah Al Amiri:This mission is all about hope. At the time that we started this mission in late 2013, the Middle East was known notoriously for all the unrest across various countries. Most of it, if you dig down deep to the root cause of it was the youth weren't getting the necessary opportunities that they were looking for. We come from a region that's made up of 100 million people under the age of 35. It got to a point where the energy and the creativity of those people were being used in the wrong groups and for the wrong reasons. It was very important for us to bring another purpose to work for, and this mission was developed from the very beginning to be run completely by those under 35, done in a certain way that it has a scientific purpose.

Sarah Al Amiri:We were requested to design a mission not only to get to Mars and capture an image, but to capture valid scientific data that not only develops our science community, but is able to benefit science communities be it in the Arab Region or around the world and provide another way to look at how to advance countries and where to put the energy of the youth, and to provide opportunities for people and how to create them. We never had people that worked on planetary exploration missions prior to this mission. Seven years ago, the jobs that we have today were not there. The experience that has been captured by the team members that have been through this program has never been in the region.

Sarah Al Amiri:Yes, we have a lot of people who have left the region and are now working in various institutions abroad, but within the regions, this is the first time such an area of knowledge is there. What this changes and that's where hope factors in and even more than that, it's the hope that transforms into expanding possibilities is when you see that happening, when you put together an audacious goal that people very early on doubted it would ever see the light of day, and deliver on it as promised, within the timeline promised, within the budget promised, and with the dedication of the team working in conjunction with our knowledge partners across the world.

Sarah Al Amiri:That has sent a strong message from what I've personally from the people around me of various ages just in The Emirates. We've heard from the first time from people from around the Arab world asking questions on what does change really mean? How do you create opportunities? What are the possibilities out there? It's this dialogue that has been quite important for this mission is to let people think of a different possibility and hope for a better life and more stable life.

Mat Kaplan:This must be very gratifying, then, to see this and there's good evidence for it. I'm grateful to your colleague, Alexander McNabb for getting us together. But he also gave me this great background materials about the mission and your work including a report by University College London about the impact of the mission. The report contains this terrific infographic that I have in front of me. It quantifies many of the mission's social, educational, and cultural benefits. Do you know the one I'm talking about? It's really very impressive.

Sarah Al Amiri:Yes, and that has been something that we've had from the get-go. We've had an outreach team that has been part of this mission very early on. We've catered, I think at some point, to children as young as three years old all the way to post-graduate education. There's been dedicated programs across the board for those. We will continue those and expand them on to the region. But something that's also important that's in the University College London report that comes to our ... the objective that the UAE started a planetary exploration mission in the first place. And that was, how do you build experience in an area that does not exist within the country? How to build capabilities around that? How do you expand the capacity that you have?

Sarah Al Amiri:What this mission allowed us is to create a model by which we design and develop a project or a mission that has a very clear end outcome. At the same time, within the process of that design and development, you're transferring on experience and you're developing capabilities by sharing knowledge across nations. What this helps you to do is to not reinvent the wheel, to learn from the experience of others, more importantly to learn from the tacit knowledge that other people have had. Not something you can never be taught on a book and you can never read it and learn it from anywhere except by going through the development with someone who has gone through it before.

Sarah Al Amiri:There's very small nuances in design and development that people have learned throughout the years, that have come from failing on other programs or doing things in a certain way on other programs that have informed the path for it. What the report provided us was a sanity check. Is this model the right model by which we can go about as a nation to develop new industries? Because what we're working on for the next 10 years is to establish new economic sectors within the country and to increase the impact of scientific research within the country, and increase the capabilities and capacity of the science community overall.

Sarah Al Amiri:The purpose for that is about 20 years from now, demands for oil, for energy will start declining. That is a portion of our economy. That's not entirely our economy, but that is still a significant portion of our economy. It's very important for us to expand on the methodologies by which you can establish new sectors and be able to do that in the correct method. In some way, this has been an experiment in policy making and setting forth a method by which you can develop new sectors in the country.

Mat Kaplan:With that all nations took the long view that the UAE appears to be taking with this project and a goal that really stretches over a 100 years, I know that just over a third of your team members are women. I'm sorry to say that I think that may surprise some people outside the UAE and the Arab world, but I hope it's a pleasant surprise.

Sarah Al Amiri:I've heard that quite a lot as a surprise for us. I think it's just the natural progression that that is over 30%. The reason for that is 56% of those that enter into STEM fields today are women. You have gender parity when it comes to the input. 70% of university graduates overall are women. We've been lucky enough as a young organization that has just been established since 2006 to bring people on who are the best and brightest, and most passionate of minds to work on this project, regardless of gender. It was never something that was put sort of as a criteria and some people do assume that that was the case. It was just the best minds out there that are part of this program and part of this development process.

Mat Kaplan:You're both relatively young people. Omran, here you are, the project director for a Mars mission. I suspect you may be the youngest ever. It sounds like that fits into some of what we've heard from Sarah.

Omran Sharaf:I don't know if I'm the youngest ever project director of Mars mission, but if I am, that's a big honor, to be honest.

Mat Kaplan:I think so, yeah.

Omran Sharaf:But as you know, at the end of the day, I mean, yes we are a young team that worked on this mission and has been given this responsibility by the UAE government to deliver and to execute this project. However, we shouldn't forget that also, we work with our partners, our knowledge partners at the University of Colorado, Boulder which had experienced people with understanding and background in deep space missions. It's a combination of the youth, of the young and the combination of the experienced working together as one team, I think was a major factor in us being able to come up with this new model and approach to do doing things. At the same time, delivering the mission with the limited resources we had when it comes to timeframe and also the budget.

Omran Sharaf:One thing that the UAE government was very clear with us at the beginning, they said, "Don't buy it. Build it. However, learn from others. Don't start from scratch. Work with others [inaudible 00:41:23]. [inaudible 00:41:23] task and program, and delivering something that's new and unique, a new model of executing such missions that is more innovative, that is more efficient, that's more effective. A model that is based on collaboration rather than competition." And as I said, international cooperation was core to this mission and the reason why we were able to deliver it.

Mat Kaplan:Sounds like a pretty wise approach. Sarah, back to you. Looking away from the mission just for a moment or two, I'm thinking of your new job that you're going to move into on August 1st as president of the UAE Space Agency. Do you see that as an opportunity to extend the sorts of goals that you've talked about for this mission?

Sarah Al Amiri:Absolutely, yes. It has been something [inaudible 00:42:12] has been set up to work on. The overall space program of The Emirates is not a one-off program. We have a space agency. We've got a space center. There's an overall long-term development plan for that sector, and what is a success story for us moving forward is one, how do you transfer this capability tangentially into other sectors and two, how do you start building the space economy and further supporting the creation of businesses on the space sector in a different way, filling in a potential gap in the overall industry globally.

Sarah Al Amiri:This for me is an area that we need to seriously work on over the course of the next few years. The other aspect is a program that has been launched and it's about also working with different people in the Arab Region hosting some of the greatest minds out there to work on design and development of spacecrafts with us in conjunction, so that they can also be the voice of change within their countries and they're able to then take their experience and be able to build upon it, and build a spacecraft that are quite vital when it comes to the data or utilize data from spacecraft for urban development and overall development of the science and technology ecosystem within their nations.

Mat Kaplan:Very exciting future ahead, it sounds like. I hope that as we move into this future, even the immediate future that we can stay in touch with both of you to talk more about The Emirates Mars Mission, the Hope probe. But also, I'd love to hear more about your new job when you get into it, Sarah. I'm just wondering now as we come to the end of this, where the two of you will be on that day in February when Hope arrives at Mars?

Omran Sharaf:In the command and control room in Dubai.

Mat Kaplan:Not surprising.

Sarah Al Amiri:Exactly.

Mat Kaplan:Okay. Hopefully, a good celebration afterward. It has been a delight. Thank you so much and congratulations once again from all of us who are following this mission certainly, all of us at the Planetary Society and listeners to this show. The greatest of success to both of and the entire EMM team as we head for Mars with you.

Sarah Al Amiri:Thank you, Mat.

Omran Sharaf:Thank you, Mat. Thank you.

Mat Kaplan:We have been talking with Her Excellency Sarah bint Yousif Al Amiri who was appointed as Minister of State for Advanced Sciences in The United Arab Emirates. In October of 2017, she is also the Deputy Project Manager and Science Lead on the Emirates Mars Mission EMM, where she leads the team developing and fulfilling the mission's scientific objectives, goals, instrumentation and analysis program. She was programs engineering on the Dubai Sat-1 and Dubai Sat-2 Projects. She also shares The United Arab Emirates Council of Scientists, and as we said on August 1st, she'll become president of the UAE Space Agency.

Mat Kaplan:Sarah, I got to bring up something that you mentioned before we started recording. A certain gentleman that I work for, apparently played a role in inspiring you toward this career?

Sarah Al Amiri:Yes. I grew up watching Bill Nye The Science Guy. He brought science to life to me. It was really interesting just growing up watching that and having science brought to your household, not having it the typical textbook science that you study. That has expanded my understanding of how much impact science had on our daily lives and what you can do with it, and what you can create with it. It's an absolute pleasure to be on this podcast.

Mat Kaplan:The Science Guy can be very proud when I tell him about this. Omran Sharaf is The Emirates Mars Mission Project Director at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Center in the UAE. He and his team are responsible for developing, launching, and operating the Hope spacecraft that we've been talking about. Omran has worked on the project from the start and developed all the necessary capabilities and partnerships at the center. He oversaw this transition from Earth observation satellites to a center that develops interplanetary exploration missions. Omran, I have to note that you got your Bachelor's Degree from my father's alma mater, The University of Virginia. Go, Cavaliers!

Omran Sharaf:Go, Cavaliers! Go hoos!

Mat Kaplan:And we will go on to talking with Bruce Betts for this week's edition of What's Up in just a moment.

Read the rest here:

Hope Leads the Way to Mars - The Planetary Society

Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market Insights Overview 2020-2026 | by Market Value, Volume, Size, Share and Applications – Owned

Global Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market (Impact of COVID-19) Size, Status and Forecast 2020-2026

The Global Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market 2020 Research Report is a professional and in-depth study on the current state of Microsoft Dynamics Services Market.

This report studies the Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market with many aspects of the industry like the market size, market status, market trends and forecast, the report also provides brief information of the competitors and the specific growth opportunities with key market drivers. Find the complete Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market analysis segmented by companies, region, type and applications in the report.

Key Players: Airbus S.A.S,Astrobotic,Axiom Space,Bradford,Blue Origin,Lockheed Martin Corporation,Masten Space Systems,MAXAR Technologies Inc.,Nanoracks LLC,Northrop Grumman Corporation,Planetary Resources,Sierra Nevada Corporation,Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX),Thales Group.

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Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market continues to evolve and expand in terms of the number of companies, products, and applications that illustrates the growth perspectives. The report also covers the list of Product range and Applications with SWOT analysis, CAGR value, further adding the essential business analytics. Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market research analysis identifies the latest trends and primary factors responsible for market growth enabling the Organizations to flourish with much exposure to the markets.

Market Segment by Regions, regional analysis covers

North America (United States, Canada and Mexico)

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Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India and Southeast Asia)

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Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)

Research objectives:

To study and analyze the global Deep Space Exploration and Technology market size by key regions/countries, product type and application, history data from 2013 to 2017, and forecast to 2026.

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Focuses on the key global Deep Space Exploration and Technology players, to define, describe and analyze the value, market share, market competition landscape, SWOT analysis and development plans in next few years.

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To strategically profile the key players and comprehensively analyze their growth strategies.

The report lists the major players in the regions and their respective market share on the basis of global revenue. It also explains their strategic moves in the past few years, investments in product innovation, and changes in leadership to stay ahead in the competition. This will give the reader an edge over others as a well-informed decision can be made looking at the holistic picture of the market.

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Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market Insights Overview 2020-2026 | by Market Value, Volume, Size, Share and Applications - Owned

Heres how it feels to experience the Mars life on Earth – Livemint

The three latest Mars missions, all in July, drive home the difficulties that lie in store. Reaching the planet will take no less than seven months. Now, try to imagine how difficult it could be to survive there. In 2013, American writer and former laser physicist Kate Greene spent four months in a Mars-like environment that was createdin the form of an analog mission". Such missions are habitats designed to simulate the possible psychological and physical challenges astronauts might face in a Mars exploration mission. The data collected from these studies is used to plan safer manned space missions.

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Greene was part of a six-member crew that lived in isolation in a large geodesic dome at 8,000ft on the Hawaiian volcano of Mauna Loathe location for the first HI-SEAS (Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation) project, funded by US space agency Nasa, which aimed to answer some psychological- and food- related questions for the time astronauts are able to land on Mars.

In her book Once Upon A Time I Lived On Mars, launched just last month,Greene recalls how the crew made various Martian concessions"using wet wipes instead of bathing, forgoing social media, and doing without fresh fruits and vegetables. Their sole method of contact with the outside world was through email. To factor in the extreme distance between the two planetsphotons can fly only so fast"the crews email transmissions were also delayed by 20 minutes each way to mimic the actual communication lag" that Martian explorers would experience. It wasnt your typical Hawaiian vacation," she writes.

Apart from dozens of other experiments, like testing antimicrobial socks and behavioural surveys, the key objective for HI-SEAS-1 was to figure out the challenges of, and solutions to, menu fatigue" in space. The moot question: Would it make sense for astronauts to cook their own food once they landed on Mars?

Space food has always been a complex issue. As Greene explains, we have gone from dog food for Laikathe first animal in space, in 1957, and the first food in spaceto Salisbury steak, peanut butter and tortillas sealed in pouches. She offers the example of International Space Station (ISS) missions where astronauts are also allowed to send up a personal food treat for their mission, something that reminds them of home".

None of this, however, may be possible on a journey to Mars. Few things in Nasas pantry are designed for the length of such a journey. Nutrients degrade over time, and since the food is prepared well in advance of the mission, it needs to be fortified and palatable for up to seven years," she writes.

So what could make the cut when a manned mission is attempted? Unfortunately, early Mars expeditions will have to make do with pouched food, says Greene, who spoke to Grace Douglas, the lead scientist for Nasas Advanced Food Technology research effort, after her mission ended.

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Apart from meal-replacement bars, astronauts may be able to rely on plants and gardens on Mars, given that they have grown everything from lettuce to Chinese cabbage on the ISS in recent years.

Keeping in mind specific elements of the habitat, Greene weaves a personal account that is perfectly balanced with the science of the mission. Mars has changed everything we know about the universe. It left Greene with plenty of questions on what drives our quest for interplanetary travel. I didnt know it at the time but over the years, I have come to realize this: Mars changed me."

In The Sirens Of Mars, planetary scientist Sarah Stewart Johnson explains that the story of Mars is also the story of Earth. Tracking recent efforts to reach the red planet, Johnson, who developed an interest in Mars as a child, presents the natural history of a place where no human has been before. In her own words, the book offers an account of human exploration of Mars since the dawn of the Space Age.

The Sirens Of Mars: Searching For Life On Another World, by Sarah Stewart Johnson, Crown, 288 pages, 2,563.

With Earths fascination for Mars at an all-time high, journalists Elizabeth Howell and Nicholas Booth look at the Viking programme and explore the findings from the ongoing Curiosity rover mission. They also delve into the just launched Perseverance rover mission that will look for signs of ancient microbial life on Mars.

The Search For Life On Mars: The Greatest Scientific Detective Story Of All Time, by Elizabeth Howell and Nicholas Booth, Arcade Publishing, 424 pages, 2,404.

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Heres how it feels to experience the Mars life on Earth - Livemint

KULR Technology Receives US Patent Covering Risk Minimization of Fires and Explosions in Lithium-Ion Battery Packs – I-Connect007

KULR Technology Group, Inc., announces that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has awarded it a patent on itsThermal Runaway Shield (TRS) a passive propagation resistant solution designed and successfully tested to reduce the hazardous risks associated with thermal runaway in lithium-ion battery packs. This is the second patent the Company has been granted on its TRS technology.

The Companys TRS is a sleeve-like shield that surrounds and separates individual cells in multi-cell packs and contains carbon fiber core and liquid coolant. The unique combination and configuration of the shield passively draws intense heat of cell failures away from nearby cells while dousing the failed area in a cooling and fire-prevention liquid. The TRS product is used byNASA to transport to and store batteries aboard the International Space Station.

Securing this patent is a substantial leap forward in our research and development of products that make batteries safer, said Dr. Timothy Knowles, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of KULR. We are very pleased with the development of our patent portfolio. This new issuance expands the breadth and depth of our battery safety technology covering catastrophic battery failures.

In a comprehensive analystreportby Litchfield Hills Research last month, the firm estimated that KULR technology has an addressable market of $8 billion. The analyst further expounds: Both the growth of electric-motor based transportation and demand for increased safety of lithium-ion batteries are key drivers for KULR, continuing, KULR has what we believe to be better and lighter materials for thermal management.

Battery safety is a global concern across many large and rapidly growing markets such as electric vehicles, battery storage, 5G infrastructure, and space exploration. said Michael Mo, CEO of KULR. We continue to work with government agencies, regulators and commercial customers across the world to deploy our technology.

The patent, issued as #10727462, was awarded on July 28th, 2020.


KULR Technology Receives US Patent Covering Risk Minimization of Fires and Explosions in Lithium-Ion Battery Packs - I-Connect007

White House report outlines integrated strategy for space exploration and development – SpaceNews

WASHINGTON A new National Space Council report argues that the exploration and development of space must be an integrated effort that involves not just NASA but other government agencies, as well as international and commercial partners.

The report, A New Era for Deep Space Exploration and Development, released July 23 by the White House, is intended to outline how various government agencies will play a role in implementing national space policies, including a human return to the moon and eventual human missions to Mars.

Although NASA is, and will remain, the primary United States Government entity for civil space exploration efforts, other departments and agencies have increasingly important roles to play in space, the report states.

The report builds on existing policies, in particular Space Policy Directive (SPD) 1, which called for a sustainable return to the moon led by NASA with various partners, as well as a 2018 National Space Strategy, a broader space policy document that called for peace through strength in the space domain.

A senior administration official, speaking on background, said that the new report was intended to emphasize an integrated approach to space exploration and development. A lot of people werent aware of how our approach on space was not just about NASA, not just about Space Force, the official said. The point of the report was to build on SPD-1 and also to paint a whole-of-government picture about what we were doing.

The report describes three major areas of effort in that overall space exploration strategy: commercializing low Earth orbit activities, returning humans to the moon permanently and then sending humans to Mars. Those elements, the report says, also support science and education.

To carry out that strategy, the report identifies five major roles for government: promoting a secure and predictable space environment that involves both addressing space traffic management as well as regulatory reforms, supporting commercial activities in space, funding research and development of key space technologies, investing in private space infrastructure by being a reliable customer and backing space-related scientific activities.

The report is not intended to set new policy or direction, but instead outline how existing policies will be implemented by NASA and other agencies. One appendix in the report lists ongoing programs at various agencies that support space development, including those at NASA as well as the Departments of Commerce, Defense and Transportation, among others. A second appendix does the same with proposed programs.

Its not a binding policy document, but is something that indicates the exploration rationales for our priorities as we go forward, the senior administration official said.

That can be useful in discussions with other countries about international partnerships, the official said. Representatives of those nations are looking for additional details beyond policy documents like SPD-1 about the administrations plans as they consider potential cooperation. This is hopefully a useful communications tool for dialogue with other space agencies, expressing strategic intent, the official said.

The report was requested by Vice President Mike Pence, chairman of the National Space Council, at an August 2019 public meeting of the council. The report, originally due to be completed six months after that meeting, was developed by space council staff, but the official said that there was an interagency review to get feedback from NASA and other agencies. The councils Users Advisory Group also reviewed the report prior to release.

Those reviews did shape the document, the official said. The Users Advisory Group argued for more attention about the role of academia in the strategy that was later incorporated into the report. NASA feedback led to more discussion about LEO commercialization.

While the report emphasizes commercial partnerships in implementing the strategy, it is subtly critical of those who seek to move ahead, in the reports view, too quickly. Some people argue that humanity is destined to develop space settlements and become a multi-planetary species, the report states, invoking a phrase often used by Elon Musk, founder of SpaceX and advocate of human settlement of Mars. Achieving that, the report states, requires both technical knowledge about how to use space resources as well as economic rationales to sustain such settlements.

At present, we do not yet know if any of these conditions are possible, the report concludes. What we do know is that we will not be able to determine the answers without a space exploration and development effort that reaches beyond low-Earth orbit.

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White House report outlines integrated strategy for space exploration and development - SpaceNews

A space exploration fan, jazz artist Gregory Porter to sing for NASA launch – Reuters

(Reuters) - Jazz artist Gregory Porter, whose new single Concorde is an ode to space exploration, is set to perform on Thursday as part of a ceremony marking the launch of NASAs next generation rover that will search for signs of habitable conditions on Mars.

The Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter is scheduled to sing the Ray Charles version of America The Beautiful during the U.S. space agencys broadcast of the countdown to the launch of the Mars 2020 Perseverance Rover Mission at Cape Canaveral in Florida.

Porter said he will perform from his living room in Bakersfield, California because of the coronavirus pandemic. His record label said Porter was invited after NASA officials heard Concorde.

I wrote the song when I was on an airplane thinking about the idea of ascension, both in the body but in the mind as well. Flying into the stratosphere, Porter told Reuters. And so, anyway, NASA caught wind of it and they were interested... in partnering in the release of the song and the release of the video.

In the Concorde music video, Porter is dressed as an astronaut and appears opposite his young son, Demyan.

When Im floating around in the galaxy, hanging out with the stars, the sweetest thing to do is to come back down, to drop down to and to be on the soil and to be with your loved ones. And thats what the song is about, Porter said.

Porter said he has been a spaceflight fan since watching NASAs first shuttle launch in 1981. He remembers as a 9 year old being concerned about how the astronauts would return to Earth and making sure they landed back at Edwards Air Force Base, not far from his childhood home.

The robotic rover is intended to study Martian geology and seek signs of ancient microbial life.

Reporting by Reuters TV; Writing by Will Dunham; Editing by Rosalba O'Brien

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A space exploration fan, jazz artist Gregory Porter to sing for NASA launch - Reuters

JPL Interns Are Working From Home While ‘Going the Distance’ for Space Exploration – Meet JPL Interns | NASA/JPL Edu – NASA/JPL Edu News

Most years, summertime at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory arrives with an influx of more than 800 interns, raring to play a hands-on role in exploring Earth and space with robotic spacecraft.

Perhaps as exciting as adding NASA to their resumes and working alongside the scientists and engineers they have long admired is the chance to explore the laboratory's smorgasbord of science labs, spacecraft assembly facilities, space simulators, the historic mission control center and a place called the Mars Yard, where engineers test drive Mars rovers.

But this year, as the summer internship season approached with most of JPL's more than 6,000 employees still on mandatory telework, the laboratory and the students who were offered internships at the Southern California center had a decision to make.

"We asked the students and the mentors [the employees bringing them in] whether their projects could still be achieved remotely and provide the educational component we consider to be so crucial to these experiences," said Adrian Ponce, deputy section manager of JPL's Education Office, which runs the laboratory's STEM internship programs.

The answer was a resounding yes, which meant the laboratory had just a matter of weeks to create virtual alternatives for every aspect of the internship experience, from accessing specialized software for studying Earth and planetary science to testing and fine-tuning the movements of spacecraft in development and preparing others for launch to attending enrichment activities like science talks and team building events.

We were able to transition almost all of the interns to aspects of their projects that are telework-compatible. Others agreed to a future start date, said Ponce, adding that just 2% of the students offered internships declined to proceed or had their projects canceled.

Now, JPL's 600-plus summer interns some who were part-way through internships when the stay-at-home orders went into effect, others who are returning and many who are first-timers are getting an extended lesson in the against-the-odds attitude on which the laboratory prides itself.

We wanted to hear about their experiences as JPL's first class of remote interns. What are their routines and home offices like in cities across the country? How have their teams adapted to building spacecraft and doing science remotely? Read a collection of their responses below to learn how JPL interns are finding ways to persevere, whether it's using their engineering skills to fashion homemade desks, getting accustomed to testing spacecraft from 2,000 miles away or working alongside siblings, kids, and pets.

"I am working with an astronomer on the NEOWISE project, which is an automated system that detects near-Earth objects, such as asteroids. The goal of my project is to identify any objects missed by the automated system and use modeling to learn more about their characteristics. My average day consists of writing scripts in Python to manipulate the NEOWISE data and visually vet that the objects in the images are asteroids and not noise or stars.

My office setup consists of a table with scattered books, papers, and pencils, a laptop, television, a child in the background asking a million questions while I work, and a bird on my shoulder that watches me at times."

Jennifer Bragg will be studying optics at the University of Arizona as an incoming graduate student starting this August. She is completing her summer internship from Pahoa, Hawaii.

"I'm helping support the Perseverance Mars rover launch this summer. So far, I have been working remotely, but I'm lucky enough to have the opportunity to go to Pasadena, California, in late July to support the launch from JPL! On launch day, I will be in the testbed, where myself and a few other members of my group will be 'shadowing' the spacecraft. This means that when operators send their commands to the actual spacecraft, when its on the launch pad and during its first day or so in space, we'll send the same instructions to the test-bed version. This way, if anything goes wrong, we'll have a high-fidelity simulation ready for debugging.

I have a desk in my bedroom, so my office setup is decent enough. I bought a little whiteboard to write myself notes. As for my average working day, it really depends on what I'm doing. Some days, I'm writing procedures or code, so it's a text editor, a hundred internet tabs, and a messenger to ask my team members questions. Other days, I'm supporting a shift in the test bed, so I'm on a web call with a few other people talking about the test we're doing. Luckily, a large portion of my team's work can be done on our personal computers. The biggest change has been adding the ability to operate the test bed remotely. I'm often amazed that from New York, I can control hardware in California.

I was ecstatic that I was still able to help with the Perseverance Mars rover mission! I spent the second half of 2019 working on launch and cruise testing for the mission, so I'm happy to be able to see it through."

Radina Yanakieva is an undergraduate student studying aerospace engineering at Georgia Tech and interning from Staten Island, New York.

"Our team is using radar data [from the European Space Agencys Mars Express spacecraft] to find out what lies beneath the large icy deposits on Mars' south pole. My average day consists of analyzing this radar data on my computer to find and map the topography of an older surface that lies below the ice on Mars south pole, while my plants look on approvingly.

I was delighted to be offered the chance to work at JPL again. (This is my fourth JPL internship.) Even though it's better to be 'on lab,' it is an honor to get to learn from the coolest and smartest people in the world."

Aditya Khuller is a graduate student working toward a Ph.D. in planetary science at Arizona State University and interning from Tempe, Arizona.

"I am working on the Perseverance Mars rover mission [launching this summer]. As a member of the mobility team, I am testing the rover's auto-navigation behaviors. If given a specific location, flight software should be able to return data about where that location is relative to the rover. My project is to create test cases and develop procedures to verify the data returned by the flight software when this feature is used.

My average day starts with me eating breakfast with my mom who is also working from home. Then, I write a brief plan for my day. Next, I meet with my mentor to discuss any problems and/or updates. I spend the rest of my day at my portable workstation working on code to test the rover's behaviors and analyzing the data from the tests. I have a mini desk that I either set up in my bedroom in front of my Georgia Tech Buzz painting or in the dining room.

If I could visit in person, the first thing I would want to see is the Mars rover engineering model "Scarecrow." I would love to visit the Mars Yard [a simulated Mars environment at JPL] and watch Scarecrow run through different tests. It would be so cool to see a physical representation of the things that I've been working on."

Breanna Ivey is an undergraduate student studying electrical engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology and interning from Macon, Georgia.

"I am working on the Psyche mission as a member of the Assembly Test and Launch Operations team, also known as ATLO. (We engineers love our acronyms!) Our goal is to assemble and test the Psyche spacecraft to make sure everything works correctly so that the spacecraft will be able to orbit and study its target, a metal asteroid also called Psyche. Scientists theorize that the asteroid is actually the metal core of what was once another planet. By studying it, we hope to learn more about the formation of Earth.

I always start out my virtual work day by giving my dog a hug, grabbing a cup of coffee and heading up to my family's guest bedroom, which has turned into my office for the summer. On the window sill in my office are a number of space-themed Lego sets including the 'Women of NASA' set, which helps me get into the space-exploration mood! Once I have fueled up on coffee, my brain is ready for launch, and I log in to the JPL virtual network to start writing plans for testing Psyche's propulsion systems. While the ATLO team is working remotely, we are focused on writing test plans and procedures so that they can be ready as soon as the Psyche spacecraft is in the lab for testing. We have a continuous stream of video calls set up throughout the week to meet virtually with the teams helping to build the spacecraft."

Kaelan Oldani is a master's student studying aerospace engineering at the University of Michigan and interning from Ann Arbor, Michigan. She recently accepted a full-time position at JPL and is starting in early 2021.

"NASA's Deep Space Network is a system of antennas positioned around the world in Australia, Spain, and Goldstone, California that's used to communicate with spacecraft. My internship is working on a risk assessment of the hydraulic system for the 70-meter antenna at the Goldstone facility. The hydraulic system is what allows the antenna and dish surrounding it to move so it can accurately track spacecraft in flight. The ultimate goal of the work is to make sure the antenna's hydraulic systems meet NASA standards.

My average day starts by getting ready for work (morning routine), accessing my work computer through a virtual interface and talking with my mentor on [our collaboration tool]. Then, I dive into work, researching hydraulic schematics, JPL technical drawings of the antenna, and NASA standards, and adding to a huge spreadsheet that I use to track every component of the antenna's hydraulic system. Currently, I'm tracking every flexible hydraulic fluid hose on the system and figuring out what dangers a failure of the hose could have on personnel and the mission."

Ricardo Isai Melgar is an undergraduate student studying mechanical engineering at East Los Angeles College and interning from Los Angeles.

"My project this summer is to develop a network of carbon-dioxide sensors to be used aboard the International Space Station for monitoring the levels of carbon dioxide that crewmembers experience.

My 'office setup' is actually just a board across the end of my bed balanced on the other side by a small dresser that I pull into the middle of the room every day so that I can sit and have a hard surface to work on.

At first I wasn't sure if I was interested in doing a virtual engineering internship. How would that even work? But after talking to my family, I decided to accept. Online or in person, getting to work at JPL is still a really cool opportunity."

Susanna Eschbach is an undergraduate student studying electrical and computer engineering at Northern Illinois University and interning from DeKalb, Illinois.

"I'm planning test procedures for the Europa Clipper mission [which is designed to make flybys of Jupiter's moon Europa]. The end goal is to create a list of tests we can perform that will prove that the spacecraft meets its requirements and works as a whole system.

I was very excited when I got the offer to do a virtual internship at JPL. My internship was originally supposed to be with the Perseverance Mars rover mission, but it required too much in-person work, so I was moved to the Europa Clipper project. While I had been looking forward to working on a project that was going to be launching so soon, Jupiter's moon Europa has always captured my imagination because of the ocean under its surface. It was an added bonus to know I had an internship secured for the summer."

Izzie Torres is an undergraduate student studying aerospace engineering and management at MIT and interning from Seattle.

"I am investigating potential spacecraft trajectories to reach the water worlds orbiting the outer planets, specifically Jupiter's moon Europa. If you take both Jupiter and Europa into account, their gravitational force fields combine to allow for some incredibly fuel-efficient maneuvers between the two. The ultimate goal is to make it easier for mission designers to use these low-energy trajectories to develop mission plans that use very little fuel.

I'm not a gamer, but I just got a new gaming laptop because it has a nice graphics processing unit, or GPU. During my internship at JPL last summer, we used several GPUs and a supercomputer to make our trajectory computations 10,000 times faster! We plan to use the GPU to speed up my work this summer as well. I have my laptop connected to a second monitor up in the loft of the cabin where my wife and I are staying. We just had a baby two months ago, so I have to make the most of the quiet times when he's napping!"

Jared Blanchard is a graduate student working toward a Ph.D. in aeronautics and astronautics at Stanford University.

"I'm doing a theory-based project on the topic of nanotechnology under the mentorship of Mohammad Ashtijou and Eric Perez.

I vividly remember being infatuated with NASA as a youth, so much so that my parents ordered me a pamphlet from Space Center Houston with posters and stickers explaining all of the cool things happening across NASA. I will never forget when I was able to visit Space Center Houston on spring break in 2009. It was by far the most amazing thing I have ever witnessed as a youth. When I was offered the internship at JPL, I was excited, challenged, and motivated. There is a great deal of respect that comes with being an NASA intern, and I look forward to furthering my experiences.

But the challenges are prevalent, too. Unfortunately, the internship is completely virtual and there are limitations to my experience. It is hard working at home with the multiple personalities in my family. I love them, but have you attempted to conduct research with a surround system of romantic comedies playing in the living room, war video games blasting grenades, and the sweet voice of your grandmother asking for help getting pans from the top shelf?"

Yohn I. Ellis Jr. is a graduate student studying electrical engineering at Prairie View A&M University and interning from Houston.

"This summer, I am supporting the proposal for a small satellite mission concept called Cupids Arrow. Cupids Arrow would be a small probe designed to fly through Venus atmosphere and collect samples. The ultimate goal of the project is to understand the origin story of Venus' atmosphere and how, despite their comparable sizes, Earth and Venus evolved so differently geologically, with the former being the habitable, friendly planet that we call home and the latter being the hottest planet in our solar system with a mainly carbon dioxide atmosphere.

While ordinary JPL meetings include discussions of space probes, rockets, and visiting other planets, my working day rarely involves leaving my desk. Because all of my work can be done on my computer, I have a pretty simple office setup: a desk, my computer, and a wall full of posters of Earth and the Solar System. An average day is usually a combination of data analysis, reading and learning about Venus, and a number of web meetings. The team has several different time zones represented, so a morning meeting in Pacific time accommodates all of Pacific, Eastern and European time zones that exist within the working hours of the team."

Mina Cezairli is an undergraduate student studying mechanical engineering at Yale University and is interning from New Haven, Connecticut.

I'm characterizing the genetic signatures of heat-resistant bacteria. The goal is to improve the techniques we use to sterilize spacecraft to prevent them from contaminating other worlds or bringing contaminants back to Earth. Specifically, I'm working to refine the amount of time spacecraft need to spend getting blasted by dry heat as a sanitation method.

"As someone who has a biology-lab heavy internship, I was quite skeptical of how an online internship would work. There was originally supposed to be lab work, but I think the project took an interesting turn into research and computational biology. It has been a really cool intersection to explore, and I have gained a deeper understanding of the math and analysis involved in addition to the biology concepts."

Izabella Zamora is an undergraduate student studying biology and computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and interning from Brimfield, Massachusetts.

"I am working on the engineering operations team for the Perseverance Mars rover. After the rover lands on Mars, it will send daily status updates. Every day, an engineer at JPL will need to make sure that the status update looks healthy so that the rover can continue its mission. I am writing code to make that process a lot faster for the engineers.

When I was offered the internship back in November, I thought I would be working on hardware for the rover. Once the COVID-19 crisis began ramping up and I saw many of my friends' internships get cancelled or shortened, I was worried that the same would happen to me. One day, I got a call letting me know that my previous internship wouldn't be possible but that there was an opportunity to work on a different team. I was so grateful to have the opportunity to retain my internship at JPL and get the chance to work with my mentor, Farah Alibay, who was once a JPL intern herself."

Leilani Trautman is an undergraduate student studying electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and interning from San Diego, California.

"I am working on electronics for the coronagraph instrument that will fly aboard the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope. The Roman Space Telescope will study dark energy, dark matter, and exoplanets [planets outside our solar system]. The science instrument I'm working on will be used to image exoplanets. It's also serving as a technology demonstration to advance future coronagraphs [which are instruments designed to observe objects close to bright stars].

I was both nervous and excited to have a virtual internship. Im a returning intern, continuing my work on the coronagraph instrument. I absolutely love my work and my project at JPL, so I was really looking forward to another internship. Since Im working with the same group, I was relieved that I already knew my team, but nervous about how I would connect with my team, ask questions, and meet other 'JPLers.' But I think my team is just as effective working virtually as we were when working 'on lab.' My mentor and I have even figured out how to test hardware virtually by video calling the engineer in the lab and connecting remotely into the lab computer."

Kathryn Chamberlin is an undergraduate student studying electrical engineering at Arizona State University and interning from Phoenix.

"I am working on the flight system for the Perseverance Mars rover. The first half of my internship was spent learning the rules of the road for the entire flight system. My first task was updating command-line Python scripts, which help unpack the data that is received from the rover. After that, I moved on to testing a part of the flight software that manages which mechanisms and instruments the spacecraft can use at a certain time. I have been so grateful to contribute to the Perseverance Mars rover project, especially during the summer that it launches!

I have always been one to be happy with all the opportunities I am granted, but I do have to say it was hard to come to the realization that I would not be able to step foot on the JPL campus. However, I was truly grateful to receive this opportunity, and I have been so delighted to see the JPL spirit translate to the online video chats and communication channels. It's definitely the amazing people who make JPL into the place that everybody admires. Most important, I would like to thank my mentor, Jessica Samuels, for taking the time to meet with me every day and show me the true compassion and inspiration of the engineers at JPL."

Daniel Stover is an undergraduate student studying electrical and computer engineering at Virginia Tech and interning from Leesburg, Virginia.

"I'm working on a project called the Multi-Angle Imager for Aerosols, or MAIA. It's an instrument that will go into lower Earth orbit and collect images of particulate matter to learn about air pollution and its effects on health. I'm programming some of the software used to control the instrument's electronics. I'm also testing the simulated interface used to communicate with the instrument.

I was ecstatic to still have my internship! I'm very blessed to be able to do all my work remotely. It has sometimes proven to be a challenge when I find myself more than four layers deep in virtual environments. And it can be confusing to program hardware on the West Coast with software that I wrote all the way over here on the East Coast. However, I've learned so much and am surprised by and grateful for the meaningful relationships I've already built."

Sophia Yoo is an incoming graduate student studying electrical and computer engineering at Princeton University and is interning from Souderton, Pennsylvania.

"My summer research project is focused on using machine-learning algorithms to make predictions about the density of electrons in Earths ionosphere [a region of the planet's upper atmosphere]. Our work seeks to allow scientists to forecast this electron density, as it has important impacts on things such as GPS positioning and aircraft navigation.

Despite the strangeness of working remotely, I have learned a ton about the research process and what it is like to be part of a real research team. Working alongside my mentors to adapt to the unique challenges of working remotely has also been educational. In research, and in life, there will always be new and unforeseen problems and challenges. This extreme circumstance is valuable in that it teaches us interns the importance of creative problem solving, adaptability, and making the most out of the situation we are given."

Natalie Maus is an undergraduate student studying astrophysics and computer science at Colby College and interning from Evergreen, Colorado.

"I have two projects at JPL. My first project focuses on the Europa Clipper mission [designed to make flybys of Jupiter's moon Europa]. I study how the complex topography on the icy moon influences the temperature of the surface. This work is crucial to detect 'hot spots,' which are areas the mission (and future missions) aim to study because they might correspond to regions that could support life! My other work consists of studying frost on Mars and whether it indicates the presence of water-ice below the surface.

JPL and NASA interns are connected through social networks, and it's impressive to see the diversity. Some talks are given by 'JPLers' who make themselves available to answer questions. When I came to JPL, I expected to meet superheroes. This wish has been entirely fulfilled. Working remotely doesn't mean working alone. On the contrary, I think it increases our connections and solidarity."

Lucas Lange is an undergraduate student studying aerospace engineering and planetary science at ISAE-SUPAERO [aerospace institute in France] and interning from Pasadena, California.

Explore JPLs summer and year-round internship programs and apply at: jpl.nasa.gov/intern

Career opportunities in STEM and beyond can be found online atjpl.jobs. Learn more about careers and life at JPL on LinkedIn and by following @nasajplcareers on Instagram.

The laboratorys STEM internship and fellowship programs are managed by the JPL Education Office. Extending the NASA Office of STEM Engagements reach, JPL Education seeks to create the next generation of scientists, engineers, technologists and space explorers by supporting educators and bringing the excitement of NASA missions and science to learners of all ages.

TAGS: Higher Education, Internships, STEM, College Students, Virtual Internships, Telework, Mars 2020 interns, Mars 2020, Perseverance, DSN, Deep Space Network, Mars, Asteroids, NEOWISE, Science, Technology, Engineering, Computer Science, Psyche, International Space Station, ISS, Europa, Jupiter, Europa Clipper, trajectory, nanotechnology, Cupid's Arrow, Proposal, Venus, Planetary Protection, Biology, Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope, Dark Matter, Exoplanets, Multi-Angle Imager for Aerosols, MAIA, Earth, Earth science, air pollution,

Kim Orr, Web Producer, NASA/JPL Edu

Kim Orr is a web and content producer for the Education Office at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Her pastimes are laughing and going on Indiana Jones style adventures.

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JPL Interns Are Working From Home While 'Going the Distance' for Space Exploration - Meet JPL Interns | NASA/JPL Edu - NASA/JPL Edu News

Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market to Grow at a Stayed CAGR from 2019 – News.MarketSizeForecasters.com

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Product types: Rockets, Landers, Robots, Satellites and Orbiters

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Major participants: Airbus S.A.S, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Astrobotic, Bradford, Blue Origin, Axiom Space, MAXAR Technologies Inc., Lockheed Martin Corporation, Nanoracks LLC, Masten Space Systems, Planetary Resources, Thales Group, Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), The Boeing Company and Sierra Nevada Corporation

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#SpaceWatch Column: Exorcising the ghost of Apollo? – SpaceWatch.Global

by Dr Bleddyn Bowen

The US National Space Council published a document on 23rd July 2020 titled A New Era for Space Exploration and Development. This is a particularly interesting document, as it is not legally binding, does not make a clear policy statement, nor is one of the periodical space strategy or review documents. Yet it may be one of the more useful and revealing statements about a modern American vision for outer space in recent years.

For me, the most interesting thing about this document is that it deliberately takes aim at the fantastical thinking on humanitys future in space, and deliberately turns away from an Apollo-style scramble to put a people on the Moon. It emphasizes a sustainable and open-ended lunar and deep space exploration program.

Through this document, the National Space Council has made an effort to dispel the persistent and fanciful notions that surround US space exploration policy and potential off-world futures, and educate the reader as to the direction of travel established by the Trump Administrations sequential Space Policy Directives. It has tried to exorcise the ghost of Apollo and the unrealistic expectations it creates which haunts space exploration efforts to this day.

The document is structured like a primer to explain what the United States general long term goals are in space exploration, and how it sees it happening. It does not provide a clear timeline, or specific projects like so many of the broken promises of the NASA and international exploration roadmap since the end of the Cold War.

Directives and objectivesIt begins by putting the recent Space Policy Directives and National Space Strategy objectives together, with a focus on how they are relevant to exploration and increasing commercial opportunities in a government-funded marketplace for services. Here the National Space Council outlines how it sees a long-term presence on the Moon working out, as well as stressing the importance of learning how to explore off-world with humans in the relatively safer and more accessible environment of the Moon before trying a human effort towards Mars.

It then mentions workforce and educational issues, but moves on quickly to outline the role of Government in realizing such a vision. Given the context of the so-called NewSpace economy, or Space 4.0, or whichever buzzword you prefer, it is refreshing to see a fairly realistic and clear explanation of the US Governments role as the creator of the marketplace for commercial providers to meet US Government as well as international participants needs.

This raises an important truth about the global space economy it is still largely driven by public spending. SpaceXs new taxi service has been lauded as a new era in commercial spaceflight. Whilst SpaceX has undoubtedly made breakthroughs in reusable rocket technology, it is still highly reliant on US Government launch contracts to turn a profit.

SpaceX broke ULAs monopoly in spectacular fashion, but it has not lessened the importance of public funds in sustaining human activity in space. For now, and perhaps rightly, this vision is firmly interested in commercializing more Earth orbit operations and services rather than deep space exploration.

The Space Councils is clear that any major habitation drives for a multiplanetary species have to have clear economic rationales for doing so (then I would say strategic rationales would follow). Public funds should not bankroll such a colossal effort unless there is a clear economic return. Otherwise, human exploration and habitation will be restricted to science missions and outposts, like Antarctica.

There are so many unknowns when it comes to lunar regolith as well as the other environmental hazards, any human visitation or settlement plan for Mars and the Moon without generations-long small scale and successive science and geological missions are fantastical. Lunar dust, for example, is quite sticky and gets everywhere. We do not know how long complex machines can work in such an environment, particularly as human and robotic activity will kick up large amounts of dust.

Leaving the dreamers of rapid human expansion into cislunar space and onto Mars behind, this vision of deep space exploration and science is perhaps the strongest official effort Ive seen to try to move the USA on from the ghost of Apollo. It haunts any discussion of space policy today, conjuring endless and tiresome references to the space race of the 1960s in the media to almost any activity in space today.

Memories of ApolloBut that malign spirit of Apollo is particularly problematic in American spaceflight planning and public discussion, as you may expect. Rapid advances, colossal funding requirements, and the stunning achievements or firsts of the Apollo program get in the way of incremental, properly funded, scientific and infrastructure driven sustainable space exploration plans.

Apollo should of course be remembered as the technical and policy triumph that it was, but it is harmful as a metaphor or template for sustainable and affordable space exploration visions.It is important for space enthusiasts and those of us in global space community to remember that most people dont care that much about space, and the effort required for Apollo will likely not to be seen again. It is good therefore to see a serious effort in this document to emphasize a sustainable and open-ended program for lunar exploration (and beyond).

Another very interesting element of the document is that it ends with useful annexes that charts all of Americas current and projected plans with regard to space exploration, both robotic and crewed. As an academic researcher and teacher, as well as something of an outsider to the US space policy community, this is a particularly valuable resource and update on the large US space exploration enterprise.

Is this perhaps the influence of the scholar and teacher Professor Scott Pace, the chief executive of the National Space Council, coming through? It would not surprise me. It is welcome to see this in a major vision document from a Government body that sets out to educate its readers and citizenry. For this the National Space Council has my thanks for providing a useful resource that I will be using in my own space politics teaching at the University of Leicester in the next academic year!

International effortsAllied/international involvement appear in the language of norms and partners, but the US has had a lot of time to lay the groundwork for such things for over a decade, not least with the EUs aborted International Code of Conduct. Is a fresh start needed or can it be resurrected and amended?

The Artemis Accords will at least force the issue of governing a busier Moon and equitably distributing the limited water resources and desirable habitation locations on its surface. This is as long as actual American progress in lunar technologies and funding matches its ambitions by the mid-late 2020s.

Space isnt special or isolated from terrestrial politics. In the wider context of a more transactional US foreign policy, and a President that has not been the kindest towards international institutions and supranational political structures, I remain skeptical. How can the Americans succeed in more multilateral space governance, if it eschews multilateral governance on Earth. But if the USA puts its money where its mouth is, many others will want to hitch a ride to the Moon with all the political influence that buys for Washington.

America first?Related to that is the messaging of America first in the document. This raises concerns to some about what itll be like to work within an American-led framework, and whether itll be worth it if the US really does put the money and political capital into a sustainable lunar project. Wider space diplomacy leaves much to be desired at present, in particular how militaristic language surrounding the new Space Force plays into the rhetoric of its primary competitors.

I would argue that accommodating partners, providing better benefits, and calming unilateral urges would be far more beneficial for the USA in trying to shape norms and projects in space, particularly if it is to compete with any Chinese international partnering efforts.

The European Union and Japans participation in a larger American framework seems a reasonable bet if Washington can learn from and accommodate the complaints and experiences gleaned from the International Space Station. Already, Japan appears to be eager to participate in the lunar gateway.

But that future cannot ignore the agency of India, China, and Russia, whose relations with the United States are not always the smoothest. Their acquiescence, if not participation, is needed for any American sustainable lunar program to succeed.

Environmental sustainability is a bit thin in this document too any exploration of the Moon will disturb the environment, and any large scale presence and activity needs to be managed so as not to violate Planetary Protection principles, nor ruin the Moon as a shared 8th continent and environmental inheritance for future generations.

It is great to see a deliberate effort here at educating a wider audience and exorcising the ghost of Apollo. This tries to explain the United States vision of itself in space exploration for the next few decades. It pushes the sustainable exploration of the Moon and beyond in incremental, logical steps with no end-point in sight, and checks the hyperbole surrounding Martian crewed missions and commercial deep space companies.

But it remains to be seen how this vision will help address ecological collapse on Earth, the single biggest threat to life as we know it. Given the timescale needed to realize the future envisioned at in this document, it feels wrong to omit discussion of how such an ambitious lunar program can help address global warming. I have no doubts that it can, but I would have liked to see this articulated in this well-meaning, exploratory, and educational pamphlet.

I do believe space exploration and space technology is part of the solution for environmental sustainability on Earth, but it cannot just be assumed as some inevitability in some Whiggish interpretation of technological progress or a natural expansion of humans over ever more territory in the solar system. Without making a deliberate effort to tie in space exploration with the habitability and preservation of Earth and currently failing efforts to keep Earth habitable, Im not sure how habitable the solar system will ever be for humans.

Dr Bleddyn Bowen is a Lecturer in International Relations at the University of Leicester, UK, and the author of War in Space (Edinburgh University Press). He is an expert researcher and teacher in space warfare and space policy. He is also a regular columnist for SpaceWatch.Global. His personal website can be found here.

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#SpaceWatch Column: Exorcising the ghost of Apollo? - SpaceWatch.Global

With Pride in Heart: Belarus’ achievements in space exploration – Belarus News (BelTA)

Belarus pays special attention to space. The country has made great strides in recent decades. The Belarusian satellite for the remote sensing of Earth, the Belintersat-1 communications satellite and the educational nanosatellite BSU Sat-1 of Belarusian State University are working in low-Earth orbit. The national space science has been gaining steam, from optics to materials science. Belarusian companies produce equipment and components for spacecraft. In an interview with BelTA Chairman of the Presidium of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (NASB) Vladimir Gusakov talks about the development of a new satellite and the country's prospects for sending a cosmonaut into space.

Belarusian satellites

With the launch of the Belarusian satellite, the country has become one of the space powers. How long was the journey?

The head of state made a decision to create a Belarusian spacecraft and a Belarusian space system for the remote sensing of Earth in 2003. The country needed to lay out the conditions to receive, process and use space data for the needs of different industries. The NASB has become a regulatory body for the space program, and its Geoinformation Systems company - the national operator of the space system.

The first Belarusian satellite was made by Russian Rocket and Space Corporation RSC Energia in 2006. It was launched, however the Dnepr rocket suffered an engine failure and crashed destroying the satellite. The new project was executed by the NASB United Institute of Informatics Problems and Geoinformation Systems, OAO Peleng and the All-Russian Scientific Research Institute of Electromechanics.

The Belarusian satellite and a similar Russian satellite Canopus-B No.1 were successfully launched into orbit on 12 July 2012 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. They are part of the joint Russian-Belarusian grouping of Earth remote sensing satellites. In January this year, the National Academy of Sciences and the State Corporation Roscosmos signed an agreement to expand the capabilities of the grouping using the capabilities of the Russian satellites Canopus-B No.3, 4, 5, 6, and Canopus-B-IK.

Having launched the satellite, Belarus got an opportunity to participate in international projects and join international organizations. The country became member of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. An agreement on cooperation in space exploration and use for peaceful purposes between the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus and the UN Office on Space Affairs is in the works. The country has signed and ratified similar intergovernmental cooperation agreements with Russia, Kazakhstan and Ukraine. Today it is safe to say that Belarus has developed a space industry which involves more than 20 research and manufacturing organizations, about 4,000 professionals, and a large strategic system of space exploration.

What industries use space data most today? Is there any interest in our space images abroad?

Thanks to the launch of the satellite, Belarus has secured its information sovereignty in the field of Earth remote sensing data. Belarusian space images are used by more than 20 enterprises and organizations of 11 government agencies. Information from the Belarusian satellite is used to ensure national security, monitor natural and man-made emergencies, study the state of natural landscapes, agriculture, state land registry, road renovation and construction. Satellite images are used to make topographical and navigational maps, in geo-surveying and aerospace education. Space data is the cornerstone of many information technologies.

The Belarusian space system for the remote sensing of Earth has spurred the development of many related industries in the country such as optical-electronic engineering (OAO Peleng), microelectronic components (OAO Integral), software, materials, components for space systems (National Academy of Sciences). Images from the Belarusian spacecraft are also sold to foreign customers, mostly Russia and Kazakhstan.

A number of technical solutions were developed during the creation of the Belarusian satellite. As of June 2020, these solutions generated $27 million in profit.

The Belarusian spacecraft has been operating in low-Earth orbit for eight years already. Do you plan to continue operating it?

The technical condition of the spacecraft allows predicting its operability until the end of 2021. All onboard systems of the spacecraft are operating normally, the satellite is performing all of its tasks and functions properly. This is due to the efforts of highly qualified technical specialists of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus and the manufacturer (Russia's VNIIEM Corporation).

The expected useful life of such satellites is five years. Its operation until the end of 2021 is almost equivalent to the development of another similar spacecraft. In other words, we actually saved money that would be needed to develop another satellite. The decision to extend the operation of the spacecraft after 2021 will be made most likely in the second half of the next year, based on an analysis of its technical condition.

Belarusian State University has launched its nanosatellite into orbit. How actively do the university and academic science collaborate in the space industry?

Belarusian State University is a leading educational institution in the aerospace field in Belarus. The BSU Sat-1 scientific and educational nanosatellite developed by Belarusian State University and launched from China's Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in 2018, is used for training. At the Center of Aerospace Education at Belarusian State University there is a station for handling and receiving information from a student satellite. So the nanosatellite can be used as a flying laboratory. Students have an opportunity to study space technologies in real conditions.

Academic and university science actively collaborate in the space field. Research institutions of the National Academy of Sciences and the Education Ministry joined forces for the Belarusian space program of 2008-2012. Now we are working on the subprogram "Exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes" of the state program "Science-intensive technologies and equipment" for 2016-2020. In addition, academic and university research centers carried out a wide range of joint research while implementing six Union State space research and technical programs in 1999-2017. Now work continues on two more Union State space programs.

Projects with foreign partners

When will the Russian-Belarusian satellite be launched? What are the advantages of the new spacecraft over the existing one?

- The new satellite is under development now. The preliminary design stage is coming to a close. After that, its technical characteristics, terms of development and launch, cost of work will be finalized. The Russian-Belarusian spacecraft will have a spatial resolution of 0.35 m (the existing satellite - 2 m). The new satellite will significantly surpass the existing one in such basic parameters as image resolution and productivity, it will have an improved stereo mode and a new video mode.

The capabilities of the new spacecraft will make it possible to address a number of new tasks related to national security, monitoring of the territory of Belarus and adjacent lands. The new satellite will help make an inventory of natural resources, industrial infrastructure and utility services, monitor processes in agriculture, forestry, fishing, water and other industries, create and update topographic maps with the scale of up to 1:25 000 and city maps with the scale of up to 1:10 000. It will also be useful for drawing general geographic and thematic maps, digital elevation models, monitoring pollution and degradation of natural resources, responding to emergency situations, and conducting environmental monitoring.

The EAEU countries intend to create a Eurasian space grouping. Could you tell us more about your plans to combine satellite resources?

Of all the EAEU member states, only Belarus, Russia and Kazakhstan have satellites in orbit. In 2016, the Supreme Eurasian Economic Council decided to develop proposals on the integration of the national space systems of the Union. The proposals were approved and the development of an interstate program began in December 2018.

The document is aimed at addressing urgent organizational and technical issues in accordance with the state policy pursued by the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, the Ministry of Digital Development, Innovation and Aerospace Industry of Kazakhstan and the State Corporation Roscosmos to develop international cooperation of the EAEU countries in space activities.

The program envisages the development of a joint orbital grouping of satellites of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia, a common space data bank and new satellites. Plans are in place for two satellites similar to the Russian-Belarusian spacecraft. They will be equipped with Belarusian-made imaging equipment. Belarus will also upgrade the ground infrastructure of its space system in order to integrate it with other EAEU countries.

In 2018, Belarus hosted the International Congress of the Association of Space Explorers. Has the country been able to strengthen ties with foreign partners?

Hosting such a large-scale international event in the country has become both a matter of pride for the NASB and an opportunity to become more widely involved in international space activities. The Congress was attended by over 80 cosmonauts and astronauts from 18 countries, as well as leading foreign and Belarusian scientists and specialists. The total number of participants of the Congress was more than 450 people. The guests praised the scientific and technical potential of Belarus and the achievements of Belarusian scientists, specialists and industrialists in the space sector.

The Congress became an important stage in the development of international scientific and technical cooperation. It contributed to strengthening the status of Belarus as a space power, enhancing the authority of Belarusian space science, expanding mutually beneficial cooperation between Belarusian and foreign businessmen, scientists and specialists. The forum undoubtedly added a new impetus to the development of space exploration by Belarus and the attraction of a young generation of space explorers.

One of the practical results of the forum was the participation of the NASB as a scientific partner in the SIRIUS international scientific project in 2018. The project is run by the Institute of Biomedical Problems of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) of the United States in cooperation with organizations-partners of Germany, Italy, Japan and other countries.

During the new phase of the SIRIUS international experiment, the crew is to spend eight months in isolation simulating an expedition to the Moon. Does Belarus plan to participate?

A cooperation agreement has been signed between the Academy of Sciences of Belarus and the Institute of Biomedical Problems of the Russian Academy of Sciences. An employee of the Central Botanical Garden of the National Academy of Sciences Daniil Dubar passed the competitive selection and joined the international crew that spent four months in isolation in a special ground complex.

We plan to continue participation in the project. Our representative is a candidate for inclusion in the crew of the ground complex for eight months of isolation. Moreover, an agreement has been reached with the organizers of the project to conduct a number of experiments during this period. They have been initiated by the Center of Brain of the Institute of Physiology of the NASB.


What famous cosmonauts are related to Belarus?

Belarusian nationals who were in space are well-known in our country. Two-time Hero of the Soviet Union Pyotr Klimuk and Vladimir Kovalenok made their flights in the Soviet times. Oleg Novitsky is a pilot-cosmonaut of the Russian Federation. Both Klimuk and Kovalenok were sent into orbit three times, Novitsky - twice. Other cosmonauts have Belarusian roots as well. These are Valentina Tereshkova, Oleg Artemyev, Anton Shkaplerov, Georgy Grechko. Belarusians have made and continue making a great contribution to the development of cosmonautics in the USSR and Russia, working as designers, technical engineers, scientists and managers of organizations and enterprises.

Do you think it is possible that one day a cosmonaut representing Belarus will go into space?

In my opinion, it is necessary to expand the country's presence in space. The plan to prepare and send into orbit the first cosmonaut of sovereign Belarus may seem very ambitious. However, the first steps in this direction are being taken already.

During the meeting with Director General of the State Corporation Roscosmos Dmitry Rogozin in January 2020 we reached an agreement that Belarusian scientists will visit the Gagarin Research & Test Cosmonaut Training Center in order to get familiar with its operation. We've sent a list of the employees of research organizations of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus whom we intend to send there. The organizations include the Radiobiology Institute, the Central Botanical Garden, the Applied Science Center for Bioresources, and the Physiology Institute.

These NASB representatives can be later viewed as potential Belarusian candidates, who can be trained in the Gagarin Research & Test Cosmonaut Training Center and participate in space flights. The possibility of evaluating their fitness for space flights is being discussed.

The NASB representatives will visit the Gagarin Research & Test Cosmonaut Training Center once all the coronavirus restrictions are lifted. The possibility of participation of NASB representatives in Roscosmos' ground experiments using research products of Belarusian scientists will be discussed during the visit as well.


A space exploration agency was established in Belarus in 2015. What tasks has it been able to accomplish since then?

The agency takes care of coordinating all the space-related efforts in the country. Its primary task is to organize the operation and development of the Belarusian space system for the remote sensing of Earth. The agency interacts with the State Authority for Military Industry of Belarus and the authority's subordinate enterprises and organizations in matters concerning the use of the communications satellite Belintersat-1, the development of unmanned aerial vehicles, and core equipment for satellites. Apart from that, the agency performs expert evaluation of work and services, which are done in Belarus, and confirms or declines that the work and the services are space-related and can be exempted from VAT.

Since its inception the agency has been one of the organizers of the Belarusian Space Congress. Seven congresses have been held so far. The eighth one was supposed to take place in October, however, unfortunately, due to the current epidemic situation it has been postponed till 2021.

One of the main tasks of the agency is to advance international cooperation in space exploration. Belarus traditionally cooperates with Russia most intensively in matters of space exploration and usage. Two space exploration programs of the Union State of Belarus and Russia are in progress now Technology-SG and Integration-SG. The former is dedicated to the development of comprehensive technologies for creating materials, devices, and key components of space hardware while the latter is aimed at updating and harmonizing legislative support, organizational support, software and hardware to enable the use of remote Earth sensing systems of Belarus and Russia.

Cooperation in the area of space exploration develops vigorously with other countries of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Commonwealth of Independent States, too. Belarus takes an active part in the development of a Eurasian technology platform for space and geoinformation technologies. Apart from that, Belarus now presides in the CIS Interstate Council for Outer Space.

What space technologies of Belarusian design deserve praise?

I can state with confidence that today the Belarusian space industry has reached the world-class technological level. OAO Peleng makes optic and electronic equipment for high-detail footage. Core equipment of Belarusian make is used in all the Russian satellites of the Canopus series as well as other Russian space satellites made for foreign customers as part of commercial contracts. OAO Integral now makes a broad range of new electronic components for space equipment. The components are used by manufacturers of missiles, rockets, and space equipment in Russia and non-CIS states. Organizations of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus have designed and introduced innovative technologies for data processing, for manufacturing new products and materials for space applications. Software has been developed to run space systems and handle various monitoring tasks.

Let me give you one illustrative example. In 2018 the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency launched an orbiter to Mercury. The orbiter was fitted with multilayer screens made by the Applied Science Center for Materials Science of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus. The screens are designed to protect the orbiter from electromagnetic radiation in outer space.

In the future we see prospects of creating a series of satellites and experimental research technologies to use the satellites for the sake of development of various branches of the Belarusian economy. We would like to create new materials for outer space. As a result we will be able to talk about high effectiveness and high returns on investments in the supranational space industry.

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With Pride in Heart: Belarus' achievements in space exploration - Belarus News (BelTA)

Steampunk Venus rover ideas win NASA contest to ‘explore hell’ with clockwork robots – Space.com

A future Venus rover could be decked out with steampunk-esque rollers and fenders as it carefully explores a planet that is so hot that the environment has destroyed other spacecraft within mere minutes of landing.

These ideas of using "rollers and fenders," which would replace traditional spacecraft sensors, were just some of the designs the public suggested after NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory asked for help this spring in designing the new Venusian machine. JPL is considering including some of these innovative concepts from the public on a Venus rover first proposed under the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts program, which aims to explore far-out ideas..

JPL is hoping to go back to Venus, a world that has only seen surface exploration from a handful of Soviet Union Venera missions in the 1970s and 1980s. These reinforced spacecraft, capable as they were for their era, couldn't quickly succumbed to the oven-temperature heat and deep-water-like pressure of Venus' surface. Nobody has dared try landing since, although several countries have sent missions to look at Venus from above.

Related: What Would It Be Like to Live on Venus?

JPL's new rover concept from the contest, however, could make a new landing possible. The craft would use a small wind turbine and springs to move around, reducing its dependence on computers and advanced equipment. Named Automaton Rover for Extreme Environments, the steampunk-like design would rely on mechanical locomotion to perform operations and follow instructions autonomously. The mission could last for months on Venus' surface if all goes according ot plan.

The public responded in the hundreds to JPL's request for ideas to replace traditional spacecraft sensors sensors that would not last for long on Venus. Administered through the NASA Tournament Lab and the HeroX crowdsourcing platform, JPL received 572 entries (both team and individual) from 82 countries. The first-place winner received $15,000 and cash prizes were awarded for some other winners and finalists as well.

"The response from the community was incredible and better than I ever dreamed," Jonathan Sauder, a senior mechatronics engineer at JPL, said in a statement. "There were so many great ideas and well-developed concepts that in addition to first, second, and third place, we decided to add two finalists and another 10 honorable mentions in recognition of the amazing work people put into this project."

The first-place winner, Youssef Ghali, also won first prize for a previous NASA Tournament Lab competition called the Next Generation Animal Tracking Ideation Challenge. The full list of awardees is below.

Final Awards

Honorable Mentions

Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.


Steampunk Venus rover ideas win NASA contest to 'explore hell' with clockwork robots - Space.com

Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market (Covid-19 Updated) Is Projected to Grow at an Exponential Rate over 2020 to 2025 | MAXAR Technologies…


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Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market (Covid-19 Updated) Is Projected to Grow at an Exponential Rate over 2020 to 2025 | MAXAR Technologies...

Nations with Narrow Goals Are Trying to Capture Outer Space – NewsClick

Since 1957, the year an artificial satellite first went into earths orbit, around 8,500 satellites have been launched, of which around 2,200 are functional. The already breakneck pace at which satellites have been hurled into space is now accelerating as one company, Elon Musks SpaceX, has reportedly been permitted to launch 12,000 small satellites, and that it plans to seek permission to launch another 30,000 satellites. SpaceX owns the biggest commercial satellite mega-constellation today, beating Planet Labs, another American company that claims to have 150 satellites in space. There are many serious implications to such an increase in satellite traffic in the earths orbit.

First, a small number of companies, mostly from one country, are starting to dominate space. Although SpaceX has emphasised civilian objectives such as providing high-speed internet even to regions with little access, there are strategic and military implications to a company from a superpower nation expanding aggressively in this field. The security implications are all the more serious as the threat of militarisation of space increases in an unstable world.

No direct confrontation has ever taken place in space but spy and reconnaissance satellites have been active for several decades, sending important military information around. Though many countries have already conducted successful anti-satellite missile tests, those are nothing compared to the future plans of the nations that want to use space as a tool to dominate the world.

In the foreword to author-academic Karl Grossmans 2001 book, Weapons in Space, Michio Kaku, a noted American theoretical physicist, wrote, The weaponisation of space presents a real threat to the security of everyone on earth It will greatly accelerate a new arms race in space, with other nations working feverishly to penetrate a US Star Wars Program, or to build one themselves.

Although the United Nations framed an Outer Space Treaty in 1967 which prohibits the weaponisation of space, particularly the use of weapons of mass destruction and owning territories in space, it has not deterred space expansionism. Both military and commercial considerations make it highly unlikely that a big leap taken by a single United States company will remain uncontested. More companies are likely to join the race in response to the ambitions of SpaceX. Many countries which lead in the development of space technology including Russia and China are likely to step up their own satellite launches. Further, it is now being reported that the United States wants to continue to unilaterally determine the limits of the Outer Space Treaty with its so-called Artemis Accords that will pursue space exploration with economic and militaristic objectives.

The Artemis Accords, although officially stated by the United States to have peaceful objectives in space exploration, can escalate tensions by opening the doors to exploitation of lunar and Mars resources. On 6 April, an executive order of the United States asserted that Americans should have the right to engage in commercial exploration, recovery, and use of resources in outer space, consistent with applicable law. Outer space is a legally and physically unique domain of human activity, and the United States does not view it as a global commons.

David P Fidler, writing in the Council on Foreign Relations, recently pointed out that this executive order only confirms what has been known for longthat the United States position on space is not universally shared, and therefore this executive order generated criticism. Roscosmos, the Russian space agency, compared the US stance to colonialism, in claiming for the United States the right to seize territories and resources in space. Similarly, Russian officials expressed unease about the Artemis Accords and their compatibility with international law, with the Roscosmos director asserting that the principle of invasion is the same, whether it be the Moon or Iraq. This reaction suggests that Russia and like-minded countries might oppose the accords in the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space or create a rival governance initiative on lunar activities, Fidler wrote. The Armetis Accords can surely escalate tensions by paving the way for exploitation of resources of the Moon and Mars, a project in which the United States is seeking bilateral allies.

It is impossible to say to what extent the assured and stated economic gains of space exploration have matched the returns, especially considering the very high costs of satellite technology research and launches. Their high cost is the reason for the constant suspicion that ultimately military objectives drive space ventures.

For the United States, the military use of space has been on the agenda for a very long time. Leading rocket engineers who were in the service of the Nazi regime were brought to America after the end of the second World War and they prepared some very destructive space warfare plans. According to media reports there were proposals for a future system of hundreds of nuclear-armed satellites.

The Outer Space Treaty specifically outlaws nuclear weapons in space but as Karl Grossman wrote back in 2001, The US is seeking to control space and from space dominate the earth below. Control and dominate are words used repeatedly in US military documents. The US military, further, would like to have weapons in space. He also said that the rest of the world will not sit back and accept American domination from space. If the US moves ahead on its program of astro-imperialism, deploys weapons in space, other nationsChina and Russiawill meet the US in kind. There will be an arms race and inevitably war in space.

Space programs have wide-ranging civilian and military implications and uses, from a communications point of view, for weather forecasting, GPS technologies and so on. However, each civilian application also has a military context. Militarisation starts with spy satellites and can extend to open warfare, including destroying or disabling satellites. Control over space is thus a way to control the planet.

Space warfare is an existential threat, but there are other more immediate threats too. With thousands of satellites in orbit, the risk of collisions increases. And military testing can dramatically increase space debris which is already a serious menace. Around 18,000 large objects have been catalogued as waste in space, but if the smallest debris are counted then the waste is estimated to be over 12 million items.

Astronomers have also been complaining of light pollution in space. James Lowenthal, an astronomer at Smith College, told the New York Times in November 2019 that having lots and lots of bright moving objects in the sky...potentially threatens the science of astronomy itself. This is because a multitude of lights erode visibility and deter scientific work that is based on satellite imagery.

One can hope that the military use of space never reaches the point of no return, but there is an urgent need to stop the domination of any country, or its companies, even beyond this planet. At the United Nations General Assembly, over 90% of nations were for stopping militarisation of space; and neither do citizens in general support space wars. However, a movement of people must pressurise the United Nations and other international organisations constantly to uphold this global commitment to peace, justice and environment protection, and ensure that space is only explored for the welfare of all living beings.

The writer is convener, Save Earth NOW Campaign. His recent books include Protecting Earth for Children. The views are personal.

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Nations with Narrow Goals Are Trying to Capture Outer Space - NewsClick

KULR Technology Group Announces Issuance of U.S. Patent Covering Risk Minimization of Fires and Explosions in Lithium-Ion Battery Packs -…

SAN DIEGO, July 29, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- KULR Technology Group, Inc. (OTCQB: KULR), (the Company or KULR), announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has awarded it a patent on its Thermal Runaway Shield (TRS) a passive propagation resistant solution designed and successfully tested to reduce the hazardous risks associated with thermal runaway in lithium-ion battery packs. This is the second patent the Company has been granted on its TRS technology.

The Companys TRS is a sleeve-like shield that surrounds and separates individual cells in multi-cell packs and contains carbon fiber core and liquid coolant. The unique combination and configuration of the shield passively draws intense heat of cell failures away from nearby cells while dousing the failed area in a cooling and fire-prevention liquid. The TRS product is used by NASA to transport to and store batteries aboard the International Space Station.

Securing this patent is a substantial leap forward in our research and development of products that make batteries safer, said Dr. Timothy Knowles, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of KULR. We are very pleased with the development of our patent portfolio. This new issuance expands the breadth and depth of our battery safety technology covering catastrophic battery failures.

In a comprehensive analyst report by Litchfield Hills Research last month, the firm estimated that KULR technology has an addressable market of $8 billion. The analyst further expounds: Both the growth of electric-motor based transportation and demand for increased safety of lithium-ion batteries are key drivers for KULR, continuing, KULR has what we believe to be better and lighter materials for thermal management.

Battery safety is a global concern across many large and rapidly growing markets such as electric vehicles, battery storage, 5G infrastructure, and space exploration. said Michael Mo, CEO of KULR. We continue to work with government agencies, regulators and commercial customers across the world to deploy our technology.

The patent, issued as #10727462, was awarded on July 28th, 2020.

About KULR Technology Group, Inc.KULR Technology Group, Inc. develops, manufactures and licenses next-generation carbon fiber thermal management technologies for batteries and electronic systems. Leveraging the companys roots in developing breakthrough cooling solutions for NASA space missions and backed by a strong intellectual property portfolio, KULR enables leading aerospace, electronics, energy storage, 5G infrastructure, and electric vehicle manufacturers to make their products cooler, lighter and safer for the consumer. For more information, please visit http://www.kulrtechnology.com.

Safe Harbor StatementThis release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of offers to buy any securities of any entity. This release contains certain forward-looking statements based on our current expectations, forecasts and assumptions that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements in this release are based on information available to us as of the date hereof. Our actual results may differ materially from those stated or implied in such forward-looking statements, due to risks and uncertainties associated with our business, which include the risk factors disclosed in our Form 10-K filed on May 14, 2020. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding our expectations, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future and can be identified by forward-looking words such as "anticipate," "believe," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "should," and "would" or similar words. All forecasts are provided by management in this release are based on information available at this time and management expects that internal projections and expectations may change over time. In addition, the forecasts are entirely on managements best estimate of our future financial performance given our current contracts, current backlog of opportunities and conversations with new and existing customers about our products and services. We assume no obligation to update the information included in this press release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Investor Relations:Keith PinderLandon CapitalMain: (404) 995-6671kpinder@landoncapital.net

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KULR Technology Group Announces Issuance of U.S. Patent Covering Risk Minimization of Fires and Explosions in Lithium-Ion Battery Packs -...

Three-way funding agreement to establish ‘Khalifa University Space Technology and Innovation Centre’ – WAM EN

ABU DHABI, 29th July 2020 (WAM) Khalifa University of Science and Technology, the UAE Space Agency (UAESA), and Al Yah Satellite Communications (YahSat), have signed a three-way funding agreement to establish and operate the Khalifa University Space Technology and Innovation Centre (KUSTIC), firmly committing to scientific innovations and laying the foundations for further inspiring the UAEs future space missions.

A virtual gathering in Abu Dhabi on the agreement was attended by Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and Small and Medium Enterprises and Chairman of the UAE Space Agency, Dr. Eng. Mohammed Nasser Al-Ahbabi, Director-General of the UAE Space Agency, Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University of Science and Technology and Masood M. Sharif Mahmood, Chief Executive Officer of Yahsat.

The main objectives of KUSTIC will be to build capabilities and create a technical space hub through training UAE students in satellite design and manufacturing, conducting scientific research in space sector and applications, developing satellite manufacturing capabilities in the UAE, promoting and inspiring entrepreneurship in the space sector, supporting space science and technology initiatives of the UAE Space Agency, and focus on the design and assembly/integration/testing of small satellites through the Yahsat Space Lab.

KUSTIC will aim to achieve the UAEs vision in space exploration, technologies, and applications. It will play a crucial role in building capabilities and creating a technical hub by training UAE students in satellite design and manufacturing, conducting scientific research in the space sector and applications, and developing satellite manufacturing capabilities in the UAE. It will also promote and inspire entrepreneurship in the space sector; while supporting space science and technology initiatives of the UAE Space Agency.

The Center will incorporate the existing YahSat Space Lab (YSL), which was established in 2017 as the nationwide focal point in the design and Assembly/Integration/Testing (AIT) of CubeSats, both in terms of facilities and of expertise. All small satellite design, AIT and manufacturing activities of the Centre shall be performed at YSL. The lab produced and successfully launched the UAEs first imaging CubeSat in 2018.

Dr. Ahmed bin Abdullah Hamid Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and Small and Medium Enterprises and Chairman of the UAE Space Agency said: "We are looking forward to achieving a fruitful collaboration with Khalifa University of Science and Technology and YahSat that aims to enhance the interest of the youth in technology and innovation, and getting engaged in all areas of science, technology, engineering and math. Earlier this year, we launched a national strategy for space sector that will help our country gain insights matching the level of advanced countries in this vital sector. Our wise leadership has spared no effort in developing scientific research facilities in the UAE, and providing young nationals with training and professional qualifications, as they are the key drivers to move forward towards achieving the governments vision in this field."

Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi said: "As the UAE marches ahead with its ambitious plans for space missions, keeping pace with the technology advancements in this special industry has become not only essential for every institution in the country, but prudent as well. Top-ranked Khalifa University continues to remain the perfect training ground for students in science and technology, providing the right infrastructure for future scientists to seek new worlds and reach beyond todays frontier. We believe this partnership with UAE Space Agency and YahSat will further solidify our status as not only a research-intensive institution working in space-related technologies but also the ideal university that seeks to build human capital in the most advanced areas for tomorrows scientific development."

Dr. Eng. Mohammed Nasser Al-Ahbabi, Director General of the UAE Space Agency, said: "The achievements gained by the national space sector is the translation of the governments wise and long-term vision for developing the space sector, which further enhances the plans and agendas in support of the sector. We are consistently working towards strengthening productive partnerships with different organizations, adding value to the sector. Our collaboration with Khalifa University of Science and Technology and YahSat will help in supporting the young Emiratis ambitions in working and being productive individuals in the space sector, thus enhancing the UAEs leading status in the region and the world."

Al Ahbabi added: "We believe that all outcomes of this collaboration will have a significant role in consolidating the entrepreneurial spirit among the youth and increasing the number of trained staff in space sector."

Dr Arif Sultan Al Hammadi said: "As the UAE marches ahead with its ambitious plans for space missions, keeping pace with the technology advancements in this speKhaled Abdulla Al Qubaisi said: "As one of the trusted satellite operators in the world today, Yahsat embodies our nation's dreams of becoming a leading technology innovation hub. We are committed to using our capabilities and standing as an industry leader to nurture the prospects of our youth and their potential on a global scale. By guiding scores of aspiring engineers at Yahsat Space Lab, we have discovered an enormous pool of talent within the UAE, and would like to develop it further. Yahsats responsibilities as a technology mentor have increased manifold with the inception of the new Space Technology and Innovation Centre. We will continue to extend our expertise and support the students through internships, career placements and research opportunities."

According to the agreement, KUSTIC will specifically empower the development of various research thrusts covering major aspects of space mission development. The projects and initiatives will benefit the UAE and contribute to key sectors of the national economy.

More importantly, KUSTIC will be an important partner in raising awareness about the space sector among the Emirati youth, and the importance of their role in the advancement of national research and development. Moreover, in addition focusing on the design and Assembly/Integration/Testing (AIT) of small satellites, the Center will aim to establish component, assemblies and subsystem manufacturing capabilities.

Two already existing Khalifa University research centers will contribute to KUSTICs activities. The space robotics research thrust shall be covered under the leadership of the research staff from the KU Centre for Autonomous Robotic Systems (KUCARS) while the space power and energy storage research thrust shall be covered under the leadership of KU Advanced Power and Energy Center (APEC), another existing research center.

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Three-way funding agreement to establish 'Khalifa University Space Technology and Innovation Centre' - WAM EN

Taking India-Gulf Cooperation Into Space The Diplomat – The Diplomat


Over the last few years, there has been a discernible growth in Indias overall bilateral ties with most of the Arab Gulf countries. India-Gulf cooperation, presently, is no longer concentrated to the traditional commercial and energy (largely oil) trade, but is rapidly expanding to areas such as military and security issues, counterterrorism, cybersecurity, joint investment, infrastructure projects, and science and technology. The inclusion of these elements is gradually making bilateral ties more comprehensive as compared with the recent past. In other words, a strategic component to India-Gulf relations has been added. In a few cases, India and Arab gulf partners have upgraded their bilateral relations to a strategic or comprehensive strategic partnership, particularly with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, and Oman.

The paradigm shift in Indias foreign policy vis--vis the Gulf region was ushered in by the indefatigable efforts of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. By visiting most of the Gulf countries during his first term, Modi helped establish robust political ties, a missing link for a prolonged period. Further, his success in building strong personal rapport with some of the leaders in the extended western neighborhood has contributed to the expansion of engagements to newer fields. As a result, India and its Gulf partners have started to place importance on enhancing cooperation in technical sectors, including space cooperation.

Prospects for joint collaborations in this domain have coincided with visible growth with regard to science and technological advancement attained by the UAE and Saudi Arabia, in particular. For instance, the UAE successfully launched its Mars Mission Hope from Japan on July 19, after completing a laudable trip to the International Space Station (ISS) by UAE astronaut Hazzaa Al Mansoori on a Russian Soyuz-MS 15 spacecraft in September last year. Such breakthroughs offer favorable opportunities for India to elevate its technological and economic partnership with the Arab world to the next level.

Recent Developments in Space Cooperation

There have been concrete developments in the space domain following the visit of Modi to the UAE in August 2015. During their discussions, both countries emphasized the need for greater cooperation in space, which includes cooperation on the development as well as launch of satellites, ground-based infrastructure and space application. The Indian leader recognized and promoted the efforts being put in by the Emirati to establish its Space Research Centre at Al-Ain, which is the first in the region. In May of the following year, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and the UAE Space Agency (UAESA) on the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes was signed.

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Significantly, ISRO, by setting up a joint working group, reportedly played a critical role in the recent launching of the UAEs Hope probe spacecraft. Demonstrating a humble beginning to space cooperation, the UAEs Nayif-1 nanosatellite was among the 104 satellites launched by India in a single flight from Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota in February 2017. Now, in the presence of formal agreement, these two countries should not find difficulty in strengthening cooperation in various spatial spheres, including satellite navigation, sounding rockets, satellite-based rescue missions, as well as maritime security. What could create a greater synergy between ISRO and the UAESA are their quests for technical advancement in this strategic sector.

India is witnessing an upward trajectory while carving a niche in space technology, and the UAE is also equally making notable initiatives in this direction. Its ambition to emerge as a pioneer in the region became visible when it launched the Arab Space Cooperation Group, a conglomeration of 11 Arab countries, namely Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, Lebanon, Sudan, and Kuwait, in March 2019. With a stated objective to empower the Arab world in the global space industry, the members of this grouping are collaborating on the development of an advanced satellite called 813, which will be used to monitor earth, climate, and related environmental issues. The development of this spatial technology, with a life span of about five years, is likely to take three years. Indicating another step forward, the Emirati launched a new three-year space training program (including scholarships and financial incentives) called Arab Space Pioneers in mid-July this year, to foster the next generation of Arab astronomers and scientists. India could explore the possibility of providing relevant expertise, which could facilitate the strengthening of space cooperation. The Dubai-based Mohammed bin Rashid Space Center (which supervised the designing, development and launching of the Hope probe) is also a pivotal organization with which India could look for a possible tie-up.

Likewise, Saudi Arabia, a close strategic partner, has taken up important steps to develop its own space expertise, the latest being the establishment of the Saudi Space Agency (SPA) in December 2018, within the framework of its Vision 2030 Plan. While King Abdulaziz City of Science and Technology (KACST) mainly undertakes activities regarding satellite manufacturing and research and development, as well as implementation and management of space science and exploration research and missions, SPA will likely conduct programs pertaining to Saudis international space cooperation. The newly created agency is also tasked to coordinate and develop Saudi space policy and strategy through a cooperation mechanism between its civil, commercial, and military sectors and related government ministries and agencies.

The emerging scenario in Saudi Arabia opens a widow of opportunity for uplifting cooperation with India. The Kingdoms increasing focus on developing its own space technology will likely necessitate Riyadh to seek assistance from foreign countries that have already achieved a considerable degree of experience in space science. Indias participation in that regard could be significant, and put a thrust to the space-related cooperation that, otherwise, remains lackluster despite a MoU being signed between ISRO and KACST in February 2010. Inactivity in this sphere runs contrary to the growing ties between the two countries in recent years. For now, potential areas of cooperation include remote sensing, satellite communication, and satellite-based navigation.

Oman was one of the first countries in the Gulf region that exhibited interest in forging space cooperation with India nearly a decade ago. To this end, the Sultanate even dispatched a delegation from its Department of Communication to ISROs technical facilities in March 2011, which continued exploring the feasibility to go into a formal arrangement. This resulted in the signing of a MoU on cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space during Modis February 2018 visit to Muscat. The agreement, which was finally approved by Indias Union Cabinet in June 2018, would enable both sides to cooperate in space science, technology and applications including remote sensing of the earth; satellite based navigation; space science and planetary exploration; use of spacecraft and space systems and ground system; and application of space technology. Considering the heightening bilateral partnerships, Indias assistance in building Omans capabilities, including training and human resource development, is expected to be promising.

The China Factor

In this otherwise potentially rich domain for cooperation between India and its Gulf partners, what could emerge as a competing factor are the technological inroads being made by China in the wider Middle East. Based on Chinas Arab Policy Paper (released in January 2016), Beijing is striving to upgrade its pragmatic cooperation with almost all the Arab countries, with space satellite cooperation as one of the priorities. This is within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative strategy rolled out by the Chinese government in 2013.

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In a joint initiative, for instance, Saudi Arabia and China unveiled three lunar images acquired through their cooperation on the relay satellite mission for Chinas Change-4 lunar probe in July 2018. This was followed by the launching of KACST-manufactured aerial survey satellites, Saudi SAT 5A and 5B, from Chinas Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in December 2018. The importance of science and technology as one of the drivers of bilateral cooperation was flagged during the commemoration of 30 years of Saudi-Sino diplomatic relations on July 21 this year.

Similarly, the UAE signed an agreement in December 2015 with China for collaboration in space exploration and the study and development of space science. The salience of joint technological innovation, including in the space and satellite realms, was adequately discussed during the visit of Abu Dhabis Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan to China in July 2019. Given the developing nature of their present-day bilateral ties, further progress in this direction can be anticipated in the near future.

Notwithstanding the aforementioned third-party dimension, the timing is still ripe for India to scale up its space cooperation with the Gulf states. The strengthening of such engagements should not be an arduous task, as there are already legal and technical frameworks available. More importantly, political goodwill exists between the governments of India and the Gulf states at the moment. In both New Delhi and the Gulf capitals, there is a rush toward forging partnerships in the technological realm. In the Arab states, this is due to their increasing attention toward reducing reliance on oil and the energy-driven economy. The similarity in the quest for technological advancement on both sides could act as a catalyst and, in the long run, space cooperation could emerge as new momentum that could continue propelling the already-flourishing Indo-Gulf ties.

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Dr. Alvite Ningthoujam is currently a non-resident fellow at the New Delhi-based Middle East Institute. He also previously served in the National Security Council Secretariat (NSCS), Prime Ministers Office (PMO), New Delhi. The views expressed here are personal.

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Taking India-Gulf Cooperation Into Space The Diplomat - The Diplomat

Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market to Grow at a Stayed CAGR from 2019 – GroundAlerts.com

The ' Deep Space Exploration and Technology market' research added by Market Study Report, LLC, is essentially an exhaustive review of present and future trends of this business sphere. The report also collates a concise outline of industry share contenders, market share, market size in terms of value and volume, distribution channel, and geographical spectrum along with revenue predictions of the industry landscape.

The Deep Space Exploration and Technology market report entails a comprehensive database on the future projections of the pivotal aspects of this industry vertical including market trends, current revenue, market size, and profit estimates. The research provides an outline of how the Deep Space Exploration and Technology market will perform by highlighting the key factors influencing the market dynamics and growth rate of the industry over the forecast period. Furthermore, challenges deterring the market growth as well as the growth opportunities across regional terrains are elucidated in the report. Additionally, the study encapsulates details pertaining to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the market size.

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Key pointers from the Deep Space Exploration and Technology market report:

Addressing the Deep Space Exploration and Technology market with respect to the regional terrain

Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market categorization: North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa and South America

An overview of the details highlighted in the report with respect to the regional markets:

A comprehensive understanding of the Deep Space Exploration and Technology market in terms of the product and application spectrums:

Product landscape:

Product types: Rockets, Landers, Robots, Satellites and Orbiters

Key insights offered in the report:

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Application landscape:

Application segmentation: Moon Exploration, Transportation, Orbital Infrastructure, Mars Exploration and Others

Specifics covered in the report:

Other inferences from the report:

A gist of competitive terrain of the Deep Space Exploration and Technology market:

Major participants: Airbus S.A.S, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Astrobotic, Bradford, Blue Origin, Axiom Space, MAXAR Technologies Inc., Lockheed Martin Corporation, Nanoracks LLC, Masten Space Systems, Planetary Resources, Thales Group, Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX), The Boeing Company and Sierra Nevada Corporation

Key parameters that govern the competitive dynamics:

Significant Key Features Highlights of The Reports:

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Deep Space Exploration and Technology Market to Grow at a Stayed CAGR from 2019 - GroundAlerts.com

China’s Mars mission is a glimpse into its space ambitions. But we’re not in a space race yet – ABC News

NASA is set to launch its fourth Mars rover mission today.

The mission includes a micro-helicopter that will attempt the first flight on the red planet.

But by the time it arrives around March next year, another rover from China will be preparing to touch down.

Both missions have prompted a great deal of speculation about a new 21st century space race.

Last time it was the world's two biggest superpowers, Russia and the United States, competing to send a man to the Moon.

But this time another major superpower has entered the mix.

Perseverance as the US rover is called is part of an ambitious long-term NASA program to capture ground samples and transport them back to earth, where they can be studied in unprecedented detail.

The mini-helicopter experiment aims to see whether it's possible to carry out close-range aerial surveys of Mars covering more ground than a rover could.

China's mission, on the other hand, is ambitious in other ways.

NASA, China and the United Arab Emirates are going to Mars. Here's a quick look at each of the missions.

The Tianwen-1 probe named after a classic poem titled 'heavenly questions' blasted off from China's southern island Hainan last week and seeks to narrow the technological gap with the US by decades.

China's military-led space program is aiming to achieve three 'firsts' a Mars orbiter, a lander and a rover all in one mission.

"China has now joined the Mars space club," Professor of Aerospace Engineering at Tsinghua University in Beijing, Fu Song, told the ABC.

"But China doesn't want to compete with the US the US has the most advanced technology."

The Tianwen-1 probe is the latest in a steady program of space missions helping China become a major space power.

In 2003, China became only the third nation to successfully carry out human spaceflight.

Since then it has launched two space laboratory modules, called Tiangong.

And in 2018, China became the only country to successfully land a probe on the far side of the moon.

The mission was a technologically difficult feat given communication signals with Earth have to be bounced off satellites.

The various missions aim to build towards China independently operating a manned space station in low orbit within a few years.

If successful, it may become the only space lab, with doubts over whether the International Space Station will be replaced once it is decommissioned later this decade.

China's lunar goals over the next decade also include the possible establishment of a science research post on the south pole of the moon.

The project will potentially be built using 3D printing technology, although public details are scarce.

"Success in today's mission forms the vital base for success in our next missions," deputy director of China's Space Administration Wu Yanhua told State TV after the Tianwen-1 launch.

"If the entire program is successful, it will be a major milestone for China."

Analysts say the rapid strides China's space scientists and engineers are making doesn't mean the dawn of a new space 'race'. At least, not yet, anyway.

Are you across the Red Planet or will our quiz leave you red-faced?

Instead, it suggests we are about to enter a new 'golden era' of space exploration.

Another entrant to Mars exploration the United Arab Emirates also recently launched an orbiting satellite with the technological help of the US.

Along with China, the mission marks a significant change in the global space field, which has so far been dominated by the US and Russia.

But landing on Mars remains the most difficult challenge.


And as such, according to Dean Cheng a China space and military analyst at US think tank The Heritage Foundation we are still some way off comparing China's space program to the US.

"What this does is it puts China on the map as only the third nation to send a probe to Mars," Mr Cheng told the ABC.

"But you are comparing apples and kumquats. This is a major moment for Chinese space science it's their first interplanetary probe going beyond the Earth's moon system.

"But we have to keep in mind the US was able to land probes on Mars back in the 1970s and along with the Russians had Martian orbiters before that."

Despite the recent successes of China's space missions, experts also warn the chances of pulling off all three goals of the Tianwen-1 mission will be difficult.

"Only NASA has managed to land safely on the Martian surface," said space journalist Andrew Jones, who is monitoring China's space program.

"The Europeans have failed, the Russians and Soviets have failed, everything has to go perfectly.

"For a first attempt, it's a tall order."

By contrast, Perseverance will be the fifth rover to land on Mars after missions in 1997, 2004 (which landed two rovers) and 2012.

The US banned cooperation with China on space in 2011 due to concerns China would gain access to American technologies and apply them to military use.

Beijing has long argued against the ban and has largely cooperated with Russia and Germany instead.

The US restriction highlights that despite its technological lead, competition in space will be a major area of rivalry in future.

One advantage China has is that its space program isn't subject to the whims of changing political administrations.

"At the moment, at least with the current administration, the US is aiming to go to the moon with astronauts this decade," Jones said.

"That's something which is way beyond the reach of Chinese capabilities."

The question is, for how long?

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China's Mars mission is a glimpse into its space ambitions. But we're not in a space race yet - ABC News